Monday, September 7, 2015

Four Things I Remember about Healdsburg*



1. For years before we moved here, we loved Healdsburg for four things: The Raven (for movies), the dump (for dumping trash and generally interesting things to see), the Saturday farmer's market (for fresh produce and, in November, locally made crafts), and the Russian River (for swimming, wading, exploring and rare canoe, kayak or raft excursions).

2. Healdsburg's downtown is the best. Tourists swarm all summer (really, people don't you have crosswalks and traffic lights where you come from?), but the rest of the year, the Plaza has toddlers walking the rim of the little fountain, elementary school aged children playing tag in the gazebo, parents sitting on the benches and chatting, people and dogs strolling through, and teenagers criss-crossing the paths. There are art galleries (when our kids were little, we considered them free museums, and we love museums), a fair trade store, two bookstores, a fabric shop with erratic hours, a lot of expensive shops for people who want to spend money, lots of restaurants, a toy store, two tea shops,three dog grooming places, and more.

3. In spite of the tourists, agriculture is a major part of the local lifestyle. It's not at all unusual to have neighbors who raise bees for honey, chickens for eggs, fruit trees and large vegetable gardens within walking distance of the Plaza.

4. Healdsburg Community Church wasn't the first church we visited when we moved to town, and we didn't stop visiting churches after the first time we visited. But within a few months of arriving in Healdsburg, we started attending regularly, and both of us found ourselves employed there. Except for the churches our families attended when we were growing up, this is the church we've been part of longest, and the love the congregation shows is something I will always remember.

-- Mindy

*This is kind of a cheat post, since it's fairly easy to remember a place you see almost every day. Though we've moved out of Healdsburg, both of us work there. Even so, we've grown away from the intimate awareness we used to have. New buildings, remodeled houses and changed businesses often surprise us.