ON THE TRAIL WITH TY
I was out knocking and biking five hours today in Ward 4B along the far end of Wilmarth street and side roads. Lots of folks vacationing over a long 4th of July weekend. My last four visits were memorable.
1. I met a former special needs teacher who wants to return to the classroom. Since I was getting a bit woozy from the hot sun, she gave me a treat of cold water and fresh watermelon. I felt like I had died and gone to heaven! We talked about Attleboro schools and the work she had poured her life into for Attleboro’s children.
2. I then met a truly nice woman who was interested in applying for the senior work-off program to help pay her property tax bills. She whispered, " We don’t talk about presidential politics in my neighborhood. If we did we might disagree and lose some friends. People seem afraid to talk about politics." I enjoyed meeting her. She asked me to put up my sign on her lawn.
3. Then I saw a past supporter as he was parking his car. We spent a long time talking about the needs of the city to maintain our buildings, instead of letting them go until they required major repairs or complete replacement. I couldn’t agree more. Finally we went onto his street and he gave me a lesson in the correct way to lay down pavement.
4. But I made a mistake and made one last visit to finish the street. I knocked once, waited a few minutes, and was about to leave when the door opened. A large man in his 30’s looked down on me… scowling. Feeling uncomfortable, I blurted, "I’m your city councilor, my name is Ty. This is my last visit."
He slowly backed away and shut the door in my face. I held my tongue and walked away.
5. As I biked home I kicked myself for going to one house too many. My day ended on a big downer instead of three wonderful visits in a row.
6. I thought through what had happened as a rode my bike back home. There is a lesson in everything in life. It’s essential to be civil under all circumstances.
Every day we spend on the trail ..teaches us a real life lesson.
Ty Waterman, City Councilor At-Large