A Good Place to Live
The poverty. The unemployment. The socio-economic class disparity. The homelessness. The smell. The list goes on and on.
Naysayers will naysay, no matter what we others may say or do. It’s what naysayers say and do best.
And people like me may actually need the naysayers. We sometimes need them to keep those of us who are smitten by unconditional love to stay a bit more grounded in our enthusiasm for this good place to live called Bristol.
I number among those who proudly profess an unconditional love for Bristol. No matter what problems may beset her, I will never forsake her. For better or for worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, I support and encourage her. We who truly love Bristol are always there for her (and I’ve found that even the naysayers can deeply love Bristol, too - they just go about it a bit differently than I do).
There are a great many good things currently in store and on the horizon for our good town. (I should note here that when I refer to Bristol, I am speaking of “both” sides of the border, TN and VA. And like many who live in and near Bristol, I think of our entire local geographical region as “one” - and in countless ways, we truly are.)
We have the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Bristol coming to town soon. As a direct result, a vast number of jobs and opportunities will be created for the citizens of our entire region. In the past I have written a couple of articles in the Bristol Herald Courier in full support of this endeavor by Jim McGlothlin and Clyde Stacy - two wealthy local businessmen who don’t need the money, but who are doing this primarily to invest in the economic future of the people of our region. I know these men. So I can personally vouch for the honest intent of both concerning this vast venture.
A new consolidated elementary school has finally been approved and is now poised to be built soon in Bristol VA. A few years back I wrote an article in full support of that worthy endeavor. However, the original new school proposition initially lost out by a single vote on our city council. But good things often take time; the plan has since been revived and reworked, possibly coming out in reality even better than ever now. For the first time in a long time, every child in the city will have up-to-date educational facilities - and “equal” educational opportunity.
Bristol’s Birthplace of Country Music Museum and our Rhythm and Roots Reunion quite literally have neither an equal nor a peer anywhere else under the sun. And we have both. Right here. A very blessed Bristol, we are.
There are countless other wonderful Bristol happenings I could list here. Please forgive me for not taking the time right now. I certainly hope to do so sometime in the future within this online column.
But my primary purpose in this particular story is to highlight the main reason “why” Bristol is such a good place to live; if you take away all the good things above about us and leave just the people - it would still be a good place to live.
After all is said and done, our people are what makes us a good place.
Perhaps the best way for me to further portray that fact to the reader is by telling the two following unique and amazing stories: