The other day Jules asked me if we knew everyone in Vermont.
It's a funny question because sometimes it feels like the answer is yes. Burlington, in particular, is a relatively small community and, because our lives right now are focused on places and activities that are family-friendly - farmer's markets and farms, playgrounds and the ECHO - we tend to keep running into the same people over and over. And for better or worse, I'm the kind of person who believes that, if our paths have crossed (in person or otherwise), two or more times, I should know you. So I introduce myself. (If you've been a target and felt accosted, um, I'm sorry.) In any case, we know a lot of people in Vermont--or at least this little corner of it.
But what constantly surprises me is how many new people I keep meeting - many of them friends of friends who've been moving in circles concentric to mine for years. Which seems crazy. And then I remind myself that, for almost half a decade, I've been living under a little rock that is a needy young family. (Don't get me wrong, this has been awesome. Most of the time.)
I'm a classic extrovert, and I need to be connecting constantly to keep happy. Hunkering down at home, no doubt, is a big part of why I have felt so ambivalent about staying in Vermont these last few years. But lately I've been able to dip back into the worlds that feed my spirit: I'm dancing again. I'm going to out to hear live music, to book readings and art exhibits. I'm lingering over long dinners with old friends: irreverent ones with creative tendencies, my favorite kind of people.
And I remember now: This town, this state, is packed with passionate people who make me feel normal. And engaged. Inspired.
So, no, Jules: We don't know everyone in Vermont. But the more people we meet, the more I love this place.