Into my third week and things are starting to fall into place — including the leaves as we go into the fall season. I am beginning to learn the town.
Residents in the town are starting to reach out and welcome me.
For that, I am grateful. Although not new to the newspaper industry, I am in a new position, in a new town, with new movers and shakers. So I am sitting back watching and learning. I am already seeing the differences between Cheraw and the small town I lived in and the small town where I worked, both professionally and personally.
My first observation was the town council meeting last week. First of all, it was an update meeting, not the monthly council meeting the board is required to have. Where I came from, either the small towns barely had enough to make it worth holding a regular meeting or what was going on, they did their best to not let us know about.
I have also noticed the downtown area is busy. I haven’t noticed many empty, falling-down buildings. There is actually activity going on. Another plus is a better selection of restaurants. I know there may not be a lot of big chain restaurants, but I don’t have to drive 40 minutes if I want a certain type of food.
I also don’t have to drive an hour to get a pair of shoes or a shirt for a quick event. Bigger malls, yes, but I can “make do” and find something great until then.
There were four schools on my old beat in the whole county.
I think I have counted that many within a 20-mile radius here. But I think the greatest plus is the gas prices. Imagine my delight as I was traveling for a meeting and saw gas for $1.81, it was like Christmas. In my hometown, cheap was $2.07 when I was home this past weekend.
I am looking forward to attending some of the festivals and other artsy and entertainment shows and events as well.
This leads me to a question: What is the one thing you all feel I need to see or partake in at least once during my time here? Let me know.
Maria D. Grandy is The Cheraw Chronicle’s staff writer, photographer, community news editor and Jill of all journalistic trades. Reach her at 843-537-5261 and email@example.com.