I was hesitant to use the term “townie.” When I was growing up, it was used as a derogatory term for the town weirdos, or the people who never really went anywhere. Growing up, I learned that it wasn’t such a bad thing. My brother was a townie. He was a mechanic at the gas station. Every time I visited him I was in awe – it was like he was mayor. Everyone knew him. Everyone loved him, despite some troubles he had with drinking. He was beloved, really. He has since grown up and moved on and is now on his way to being as much of a Townie as you can be in the city. But he changed my feelings on what a Townie really was.
It’s funny – I am an introvert. I don’t speak unless spoken to. I guess that doesn’t apply when you are crammed in small space with others. I got to talking with Jane. She’s older, for sure. She talked a lot about her kids and grandkids, she was so proud of them.
During the day I noticed that EVERYONE stopped to say hello to her. I wasn’t sure why.
While we were talking, I learned that she not only knew the previous owner of the house I am renting, but pretty much every other owner there was. She has a bed & breakfast and it has been in the family for 90 years. She mentioned that she did breakfast every Sunday at the Country Store down the street from me and invited me to join in, so I could meet people.
Today was my first day going. I was there for 4 hours. I met more than 15 “locals.” Jane introduced me as her new friend and everyone welcomed me with open arms – literally, I got hugs. People were there before 8:30 and we were the last to leave, but it was a rotating group of people stopping in for breakfast, coffee and conversation. The youngest was just about a year, and we spanned the generations up to 60ish. It was lovely.
Know what I loved most of all? It was executives to entrepreneurs to mechanics. All were welcome and convened as family. I love this. I have always had friends from all walks of life and love being in a place where this stuff doesn’t matter. They talked about really personal stuff. I know a lot of things about people who started as strangers, but I can tell will become fast friends.
I can’t wait for Sundays!