Thursday, November 20, 2008

Port Jefferson Village.. my home town

When I was a child, I used to ride my bike to Port Jefferson. I lived about 6 miles from here in Selden and I looked forward to coming into the village to hang out and look out at the water in the harbor. I would watch the ferry go off to Connecticut and wonder just what it looked like over there. Having a very difficult childhood and adolescence, I took solace in going to the harbor watching the boats and staring out at the water in tranquility, solitude and quiet. I dreamed that one day I would live here in this village and be able to feel this peace every single day of my life. I loved to meditate at places I had discovered along the harbor and hills overlooking Mt. Misery Point. No one could hurt me there; no one could be out of control around me; no one could find me.

I went off to college initially at the University of Kentucky on a baseball scholarship. Eventually , I transferred to Villanova University outside Philadelphia continuing to play baseball and then at Eastern University. I vowed that when I graduated I would never return to Long Island. I wanted to create new memories in a different part of the world and leave those painful ones behind. I forgot about my youthful plan of living in Port Jefferson. I missed Long Island a bit so I decided I would come back here for a while and make some money and then relocate to another place. I attended graduate school at SUNY Stonybrook School of Social Welfare. I had a girlfriend who eventually became my fiance. (strange, yet true). As often occurs, it is difficult to leave a place when you have employment and friends and intimate relationships. So, I never left this island.

I worked after graduate school at hospitals and hospice organizations and then home health care agencies in addition to maintaining a part time private practice. I always remembered Port Jefferson and would return here often. When Mike and I were looking for a home we considered many places, but I found myself remembering my youthful wish. In 2003, we found our perfect home here in the village. I can walk to my office each day and enjoy this wonderful village. It is such a pleasure to be able to live and work in the same place where we shop and have lunches and dinners. Having coffee downtown on Main Street and sharing stories, joys and sorrows with the locals is what I have grown to appreciate. I enjoy knowing so many of the shop owners, residents and characters in our village. I enjoy others knowing who I am and saying hello to me each day asking me how my day is going or how my partner is. The familiarity is what I love. In many ways, it reminds me of an earlier time in this country. I love our village's charm, natural beauty, and small town atmosphere.

Yes. We have some problems with the village. Yet, we love it here. It will always be home to me. Home for so many reasons.

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