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By October 11, 2015 Read More →

Our Towns in the Monadnock Region

Harrisville

Harrisville

I once knew a woman who lived in Hancock. Not in the village, but on Rt. 137 south of town. For some reason she never felt comfortable living in Hancock, even though she was very friendly and outgoing and neighborly. It just wasn’t her town. After a while her circumstances permitted her to move, which she did, just three miles down the road, but now in Harrisville. Again, she was not in the village, but suddenly she felt that she was in the town where she belonged.

Each town in the Monadnock region has its own distinct character, and it’s just as well that different towns appeal to different folks. We might think of the Monadnock region as a big patchwork quilt, with no two sections being alike. Sometimes the reason we like a place is obvious, but often I think there are is a more mystical side to it. When I first moved to the region in the mid 1970’s, I found myself living in Greenfield. After a few months I had occasion to come to Nelson, and I can still recall this feeling I had that this was where I wanted to be, but I couldn’t tell you why (and still can’t). It took several years and living in just about every other town around, but I finally made it about nine years later.

This weekend, brought tourists in abundance for the foliage (nature’s beauty) and the art tour (people’s beauty).  Travelling for various errands, I drove through several towns, and it wasn’t hard to spot folks from away studying their newly discovered surroundings. They were absorbing all the subtle and even invisible indicators of what makes each place, the feeling that a place gets from thousands of years of natural and more recent, human history. These folks might have gone home with photographs they had taken, art they had purchased, and full bellies from so many choices of wonderful eateries. But I believe each of them also took with them a sense of the uniqueness of each town they visited, and they may return with a more conscious intend to explore places that spoke to their hearts.

Gordon Peery