Midwinter’s Nap

It’s dumping snow outside, and I’m looking forward to a drive to Concord tomorrow to see what the SEC has to say about the petitioners pushing for review of the CPD project. Hopefully the roads won’t make for more than half of my day spent in the car.

I’ve noticed Berlin in winter is much harder to get into. In summer, when I don’t have any work, I meander downtown and check out what’s going on. All the time that results in a story. People are always excited to talk in Berlin, and it’s though those interactions that I get a ton of my inspiration for stories.

In winter, though, it’s more difficult. The Reporter doesn’t have an office, so I spend my time at the community college, unless I’ve got something to cover. When it’s cold and raw out I don’t want to go wandering about downtown, and as a result I don’t make the same connections I would it the summer. I find fewer of the stories I feel like really make the Reporter stand out. It’s a challenge I have yet to figure out how to overcome in this 21st century model of reporting I am in. I want the stories, but the current Reporter setup makes that hard.

Of course it could be there is just less going on. The police log today took less than 10 minutes. So little happens when the weather and the cold clamp down it almost silences the city. The cold reflects not only my stories, but the police’s beats.

I know, however, there are still things to report. I don’t want to go over and over a dead horse, but with the Laidlaw and CPD projects moving forward, and with the election transition, there are so many things to talk about.

And at the same time there are new stories with no connection to these issues. They are hot on here, but I know there are thousands more topics, both positive and negative, that need airing. I heard a great one today about a 21 year old woman who received a double lung transport five months ago. It was inspirational and compelling. She is from Berlin and got a new lease on life. That is something worth telling.

Tomorrow I dive back into the ever present energy issue. It, too, interests and captivates me. There are more stories in Berlin than one reporter can handle. I try to wrap my mind around them all, an obviously impossible task. But the community makes me want to find more. It makes me want to dig and tell stories and keep every issue that ought to be on the front page. The residents deserve it. Berlin deserves it. It makes me want to drive up there now, at 10 p.m., to see what I can find. And it makes me miss my seat at WMCC, near the door outside the Bistro, where I often type my stories on the city. It is the perfect place to be caught in a storm, and it’s where I intend to be sitting as I watch the thaw. That’s when life afresh will reemerge in the city; I will be there to tell you about it.

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