Every city and town contains people of different classes: rich, poor, and somewhere in between. What’s it like where you live? If it’s difficult for you to discern and describe the different types of classes in your locale, describe what it was like where you grew up — was it swimming pools and movie stars, industrial and working class, somewhere in between or something completely different?
Blandford, Massachusetts is a small hill town located towards the base of the Berkshires, population of about 1200. Its geographic size is very large, but the population is mostly concentrated in its center. Blandford for reasons that unknown to me, is mostly of republican makeup, though this is no longer an upscale hill town. Long ago at the end of the 1800’s Blandford was much larger in population and very prosperous; something happened at the turn of the century that shut down most of its industry. What is so intriguing is that no one knows what it was, not even the Blandford Historical Society and trust me I have asked, because I find it to be a fascinating mystery. I have to get in touch with the intern who is working with Jeanne York, our resident historian; she is working on her PH.D and the loss of Blandford’s industry is part of her thesis. I will be very interested to find out what her conclusions will be or if she will be able to come to any.
Nowadays, Blandford is struggling as many hill towns are struggling; we have too many houses for sale which further weakens the real estate market. The reason why so many houses are for sale is because there aren’t enough jobs in the area. The jobs that are available are becoming farther and farther away; my hubby’s work is an excellent example. He has to commute from Blandford to Boston and now down to Virginia and New York. It is too hard to make a living and live in a nice place like Blandford far away from city life. It has gotten to the point that living in Blandford has become too costly in terms of gas, heating oil, water and real estate taxes. My hubby and I have decided that we are going to put our home on the market in a year or two and relocate to Boston now that our babies are on their way to independence. They needn’t worry about what we get in Boston, there will always be enough room for them; they may need to share a bed with Jack, but I know that Jack won’t mind sharing with them lol.