“Everyone is suffering from golden age-ism, yearning for anything but what we’ve got,” wrote David Rothkopf in his recent blog. “But what if the premise is wrong? What if these are actually the best of times? What if we are living in the best moment in U.S. history and we are not even enjoying it?”
Seems farfetched doesn’t it?
“In his classic “A Tale of Two Cities.” Charles Dickens wrote, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way - in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.”
It’s interesting, though worded in the style of 1859, the opening lines of Dicken’s book could be describing today’s situation. Rothkopf confers, although he is concerned that we have gone too far and that corporate America and the corporate world is running things, not our elected officials but those who can buy or impress their way in the halls of government. Even locally there’s both a fear of those who can impress and those who accept what they feel they cannot change.
But let’s leave that for a while and follow the light side of Dicken’s tale; a path that those who are really interested in the community follow every day. Our local businesses have an ongoing faith that things will get better, and they are beginning to. The rest of us are weary of the length of this recession thing but are beginning to show some faith that it will end. We’re starting to look forward instead of back.
During this week’s Board of Supervisors (BOS) meeting the Chester Community Association (CCA) is hoping to have approved a community garden. A little late in the season, but you have to start somewhere. The approval by the BOS will allow another avenue for establishing a sense of place for this end of the county. Bensley has done so as well as Ettrick and Matoaca Village has a pride of place. I’m not saying that Chester doesn’t have a pride or sense of place but the things the community is doing will lead it further toward being a vibrant bustling community, even without the help of big development, but the sweat of good hard working people.
So the latest development from the community is a garden to be available to all who have an inkling to try their hand at turning dirt into produce. There’s also fellowship that come along with a project like this.
This week the CCA also birthed a committee to explore a twinning agreement with Gravesend, England. Chesterfield has had a twinning arrangement for some years, but the arrangement has teamed Chesterfield government with Bailey Bridge Middle School, but Gravesend’s twinning group has been interested in a not only government and student relationship but a community connection as well. CCA has agreed to blaze that trail.
Chesterfield’s connection with Gravesend in Gravesham? It’s not Dickens; he was born some two hours from Gravesend. Pocahontas is the connection, as many of you already knew, she is buried there.
One of the older CCA projects is the Chester Farmer’s Market and in its fourth year seems to be doing better than ever. Check on it some Saturday morning.
The CCA has projects cooking and boiling over. Contact them, they meet on the fourth Thursday of each month at the Chesterfield Center for the Arts Center office at 11801 Centre Street just opposite the Chester Library.
It may be the best of times or the worst. It all depends on your frame of mind.