Monday, June 7, 2010

Summer Porch Swings

Porch swings evoke so many memories: for me, my grandmother’s porch, hidden amidst the old Dutchman’s Pipe vines (Aristolochia gigantean); seeing but not being seen. Mostly, you have to travel to America’s small towns and byways today to sit and visit with old or new friends. The gentle rhythm of the swing, the creak of the chains and hooks lubricate our tongues, opening our closed interiors to family, friends and strangers alike. We listen a little better, allowing others to interrupt, to join our internal dialogue so often closed to any but our own insistent voices.

Such were the memories and new thoughts evoked by a lovely morning spent talking, chatting, with Linda Gross, the owner of Cedar Hill B&B located in the happy heart of the old mining town of Globe, Arizona. Linda came to Globe from corporate America to be with and care for her mother; she stays on to care for herself and to help look after Globe and all the small towns America is doing its best to ignore or discard. We need more folks like Linda, working to restore the small towns, urban neighborhoods, quiet swings and vine-draped front porches of a healthier America.

My wife, Anne, and I were delighted to share Linda’s interest in her small community with its large mining history (,_Arizona). Linda introduced us to the fascinating role played by Chinese immigrants as mine workers, merchants and shop owners in nineteenth and twentieth century Globe.

For Globe, Arizona panorama, 1917 see:,_Arizona

Evidence of old mining efforts can still be seen on the hills surrounding Globe and its nearby mining neighbor Miami, Az. Likewise, Globe’s historic district still lives and has great small restaurants run by a wonderfully diverse community of peoples. Be sure to visit with Roberta (and her daughters) at the wonderful Mexican Restaurant, Chalo's, 902 E Ash St. in Globe.

Linda Gross can be found most often hard at work as reporter, photographer, layout editor for the GlobeMiamiTimes or taking a breather in her swing at her lovely Cedar Hill B&B (1 -928-425-7530) 175 E Cedar Street, Globe, Az 85501

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