May 15, 2019
BENEFITING: PLYMOUTH TASKFORCE FOR THE HOMELESS
EVENT DATE: Nov 23, 2018
I never thought I needed a hometown, until one was given me. A service brat as a child, I have lived in more than a dozen places and lived in "America's Hometown" (Plymouth, Massachusetts) for over 25 years before I realized how special it was. Maybe it just takes that long? Maybe that feeling of being home is something we have to nurture ourselves. We assume it comes from being in a place, but perhaps it has more to do with a place within our selves. The transformation from visitor to 'townie' began to happen to me when I was hired by the local newspaper - the nearly 200 year old Old Colony Memorial. My job required that I get to know the town, its people, its unique places and, as I discovered, the rare ecosystem which is hidden behind its well-known history. For 25 years I was a tourist in my own town and then, almost miraculously, I became its most arduous supporter. It happened one morning, actually. I had taken a sunrise picture in a different location in Plymouth every morning in 2013 and, on that last morning (Dec. 31), more than 500 people joined me at 6 a.m., with the temperature hovering between 10 and 20 degrees, at Plimoth Plantation, to pose for that last picture of the year. Lining the snow-covered road that led from the re-created fort down America's first street were friends, family, a Congressman, a contingent of Masons, the Police and Fire Chief, book club members, anti-nuclear protesters, the founders of the Friends of Burial Hill, selectmen, a horde of non-profits and many others drawn there by? I really believe that they were drawn there by the to participate in something that said to them, this is my hometown. I think I inadvertently awoke that feeling in others and in myself and that's why I am WalkingHome. I want to nurture that feeling of home, that feeling of belonging, that awareness that despite our differences we all have the same longings. And I want to raise money for a permanent shelter in my hometown for those people that are the furthest away from that awareness, from that feeling of belonging someplace.