Monday, July 13, 2009

My First Community Meeting.

Today my editor had me attend a community input session titled "Charting a Course for Harrisville." It was held at the harbor, the livelihood of our county, at 7pm.

I was very nervous prior to this. Sometimes when I get nervous about doing interviews or such, I think "I don't want to be a journalist!" It's usually screamed inside my head in a voice that one would have as they are being dragged into a never ending pit. But I put on my silky red polka dot shirt, skinny jeans, and high heels anyways and show up and I do alright.

My problem was that everyone who attended this meeting was between the ages of 45-60 years old and they are highly involved in the community. The mayor was there, a Gauthier was there [The Gauthiers are like royalty in Alcona because there's so many of them and they're all rich and into communal politics], and a woman who's grandfather bought the factory that kept money in Harrisville. All these people who know so much about Harrisville and I've only lived here for two years, I was surprised that they were putting in new water lines which I guess has been in the process of being done for about a year.

I was greatful that my editor Cheryl was there. I felt a little bit more comfortable having someone there with me, especially my boss. There were a few times where I just seemed like a young, naive stupid kid who didn't know much about what was going on, which I can't deny the fact that that's exactly what I am. I am unfortunently too outspoken to keep quiet, even if I don't know what I'm talking about. For some reason I can't sit there quietly and not participate. But I was smart enough to keep my useless input to a minimum.

I listened as all the elders of Harrisville complained about sidewalks and the DNR refusing to cut down overgrown weeds around the harbor. It actually got pretty heated in there a couple times, especially since almost everyone there are friends or neighboors or more importantly; enemies. There were years old arguments and gripes brought up and some more recent arguments brought up. But the goal was met; what are the best things about Harrisville and what are the worst things, and how can we fix them?

Yes, overall it was an experience. I've realized that you can't shake your fist at the big guy on top, you have to get down and dirty with your community first.

No comments:

Post a Comment