Macon Makes Me Happy… For Now.

If you’ve known Macon for a while – this little city most of us call home – you know that we are not known for getting out and doing things. The Cherry Blossom Festival draws a lot of people to the Middle GA area, but  for every one person that is enjoying the Cherry Blossom Festival, there are 5 – 10 people from this area who have never been.

I wish I were exaggerating. Okay, maybe I’m exaggerating a little.

But lately, I’ve been to places where it’s hard to dance without stepping on someone’s shoe or being burnt by their cigarette. The Hummingbird has been getting in some excellent bands and singer/songwriters, not to mention FREE FOOD for their 4-8 Happy Hour, The Golden Bough’s Tuesday nights have been going strong, Envy’s Cult Movie Tuesday night followed by classic concerts have been a lot of fun lately, the local 478 has been up to no good, which is all good, getting together our favourite musicians and plenty of new ones for shows all over this city. Yes, there have been plenty of people taking advantage of the things that Macon has and that is a good thing.

I also know there is a lot to complain about in this city. The police don’t get paid enough, so even though they’re downtown, I don’t see them nearly enough as I walk. A friend of mine got hit in the face with a pistol while walking from Checkers back to his home. The thief took his money, then came back and took his food. This happened Saturday, two streets over from my normal walk. Now my husband is worried about me, and in order to continue my lifestyle, I have to walk with a buddy or drive a quarter of a mile. Not to mention our mayor, instead of trying to increase the downtown we do have, is trying to build a new downtown in a part of the city whose main population is the drunk, homeless guys that “needs a greyhound ticket to Dublin”.* We may be losing our museums and creating more empty buildings as people head further and further north in an attempt to be safe when there’s really no such thing.

I still feel safe. When I walk down the street, I get a hello from several people, whether it be a local hip hop artist or someone from the Dempsey, until I reach my destination. I love that walk and I don’t want to give it up.

In the end, while the negatives are pretty big, the positives are just as big and, slowly but surely, are continuing to move us in the positive direction. I’ve been back here since 1996 and then we had a long way to go. Now, we have come so far. Let’s keep moving.

*”needs a greyhound ticket to Dublin” is code for meth or alcohol and the place that houses them is jail.

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