LorainE on Lorain

April 22, 2008 at 9:41 pm 14 comments

ain't easy
that woman by Loraine Ritchey contact thatwb@yahoo.com

Sharing a name, if not a birthright, has over the years given me a sense of belonging and right to ownership in this town. When people denigrate Lorain(e) or say “Lorain(e) sucks!” I wonder are they talking about the town or me?

The past week I have had a tune running through my head – you know the one you can’t get rid of – that comes back to haunt- I found myself humming it as I drove along the streets looking at foreclosures, pot holes – garbage and the news of a police dept in trouble, cra posturing and plant closings. I passed by the old factory buildings , the Ohio Edison Plant -tried walking on a sidewalk next door which reminded me of how long we have had to put up with it and my mood was dour and the lyrics of the song “Dirty Old Town” stayed with me for yet another while .

I found my love by the gasworks croft
Dreamed a dream by the old canal
Kissed my girl by the factory wall
Dirty old town, dirty old town.

I heard a siren from the docks
Saw a train set the night on fire
Smelled the spring in the smokey wind
Dirty old town, dirty old town.

Clouds are drifting across the moon
Cats are prowling on their beat
Screams a girl in the street at night
Dirty old town, dirty old town.

I’m going to make a good sharp axe
Shining steel tempered in the fire
We’ll chop you down like an old dead tree
Henery Hawk
Dirty old town, dirty old town.

And then the sun came out and the colours that make up my neighborhood .the tree in the yard of my neighbor bringing beauty and fragrance – magnolia

the splashes of sunshine in the forsythia forsythia

and the daffodils dancing in the breeze in my front garden daffodils
a carpet of white violets violets
the pale green of rebirth cloaking the deadness of winter branches.

The young man rehabbing the old house on the corner,
the phone call from 6th street ”

could they paint and spruce up the Charleston Village sign on 5th street,”

Volunteers , who live all around me, taking “pride” in their “dirty old town”- the blue of the sky reflected in the waters of an inland sea-
The Lighthouse by  Henery  Hawk photo Henery Hawk
the people who try to make a difference every day , the ones that stand or sit for Lorain Brian

If you do nothing else for “pride” clean the area from your front door to the middle of your street- such a little task and if every one did that this would help this “dirty old town” called home! Truly a case where ONE can make a difference
May 10-17th is Pride Week in Lorain. Click here to download a commitment form

Entry filed under: city of lorain, personal opinion.

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14 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Henery  |  April 22, 2008 at 9:56 pm

    You and I must have been on the same wavelength, Loraine, only opposite ends of the spectrum.

    Last night at work, the song by Michael Stanley Band “My Town” was going thru my head. Gonna see if I can do something with that.

    Looks like I’m off for the majority of Pride Week. Will have to see what we can do….

  • 2. thatwoman  |  April 22, 2008 at 11:07 pm

    Pleanty of work to be done, just left Bud over at the project on 2nd he is putting on the preservatives, he is going to let the heron grey up a little more and only put one coat on the anchor as he wan’t that to grey up….I am hoping we maby be able to get something going around then for the landscaping BUT it is depenedent upon otheres in the “chain” to get their part done 😦

  • 3. Kelly Boyer Sagert  |  April 22, 2008 at 11:08 pm

    Well, if nothing else, Loraine . . . we’re not quitters . . .

  • 4. renee dore  |  April 23, 2008 at 1:02 am

    I was thinking how drab everything looked the other day, too ,but then the old-fashioned flowers began to blossom. Over here there are many old, established plants- forsythia, peonies , tulips, daffodils, that have been blooming for many decades. There’s something about an old neighborhood that holds so many contrasts and yes- possiblities. I guess that’s what Spring is all about- another chance…..
    I cleaned up aound an elderly resident’s home today and down the street another lady came out to clean her front yard. She said ” Have any more garbage bags? know why I’m doing this? It’s because I know how you keep your yard and feel about our neighborhood. I wanted to make our front yard look nice, too.” She said she wanted to make a difference also. This lady is a renter, has no car, and is a single mother raising a child with disablitiies. I took her some bags and yard gloves and asked if she needed help. She said “No, but thanks- I can manage”. I asked a few teenagers to help me while I swept up glass in front of their house. I told him we might be doing a clean up in May around our homes and would help. I told them we might have hot dogs after. One boy’s eyes lit up like Christmas lights. It was a good day. Renee Dore

  • 5. renee dore  |  April 23, 2008 at 1:06 am

    Correction: I asked the teenagers if they WOULD help with a cleanup. Renee Dore

  • 6. chuck camera  |  April 23, 2008 at 1:42 am

    FYI for anyone interested in Pride Day events and activities,we meet every Wednesday in council chambers at 4:00 and will continue to do so right up till Pride Week. Richard Romero is attempting to make this truly a pride week and is taking in any ideas and gathering information about what groups are trying to do or clean. This information is needed ASAP as we need to submit information to the county so Solid Waste will know what is needed in the form of supplies for the volunteer groups. The City of Lorain has not been diligent in getting the information to the county in years past and to be honest has not been very active in Pride Day for the past few years. Richard is trying to change that and is open to all suggestions, trying to find ways to raise funds for flowers, paint and anything else that may be needed to maintain the improvements throughout the year. I have been involved with pride days since it’s time in South Lorain and I have seen the dwindling interest of late. I agree with you that now is the time to change all that and get involved to help bring the “pride” back to Lorain(e)

  • 7. Michele  |  April 23, 2008 at 1:55 am

    You brought a tear to my eye, there is just a little bit left to give not much but just enough.

    I am still not right in my head, I think sad is the word I’m looking for. From sadness has come this energy that I have been lacking. I think that I was giving up before.

    One problem, one project at a time with small networks of people. All the small networks in time will connect, from that the possibilities are endless.

  • 8. Loraine Ritchey  |  April 23, 2008 at 1:33 pm

    Renee just called me she had seen children with gloves and trash bags cleaning up the area on Reid in honor of Earth Day , she was elated that the younger people in the community were involved.if anyone knows the school the students came from we would like to give them a hat tip Loraine

  • 9. Liz Tobias  |  April 23, 2008 at 3:40 pm

    I can’t make it to any meetings, but: We can always ask green houses or citizens if they have extra plants to donate. Do they have seeds, plants, flowers that need to be divided? Has someone cut down a tree, and would donate the shavings for mulch? Does anyone have leftover paint from a remodeling project? There are ways to do this for low cost.

  • 10. Loraine Ritchey  |  April 23, 2008 at 3:56 pm

    and we are going to put those suggestions to work on the 2nd street carving project Liz for the “green space etc. I am going to have you chair that committee if you will and have the time is that OK Loraine

  • 11. renee dore  |  April 23, 2008 at 7:12 pm

    Loraine- I just sent you the info and forwarded it to others in the Community regarding the clean up done by a class of local school students. Renee Dore

  • 12. Loraine Ritchey  |  April 23, 2008 at 7:43 pm

    Yes thanks Renee and I will put up a thank you to these students in the near future …

    Chuck thank you for your post hopefully you will have a full house at the meetings .Renee of course, for Lorain Growth , spearheaded the Adopt a Spot program citywide… you are correct we need to do this for more than one day and one week ….

    Michele even if just one person cares it makes a difference in someone or something’s life whether they be two legged or 4 and people are sharing the caring quietly without fanfare but they are there…. Loraine

  • 13. thatwoman  |  April 24, 2008 at 2:40 am

    I just received a photo of the “before ” of the Charleston Village sign ….Pride day volunteers have cleaned up and edged and have taken the sign to work on it – it was really looking pretty bad this year….getting too old like me 🙂 but it has gone for a face lift and that entrance way will look good again.I will do more on the sign as things progress………..Loraine

  • 14. What drives my traffic? « That Woman’s Weblog  |  July 13, 2008 at 10:11 pm

    […] What has surprised me is that at least 70 percent of my traffic is NOT local which reminded me that what I write about Lorain and Lorain County those thoughts and words are reaching a different and wider audience ) .”Note to self – temper the negative with the positive- you never know who reads “ […]

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April 2008

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