I am a flexed arm of land you love, and you need me more than I need you.
It’s 70 degrees and mostly sunny in Hartford? By the time you get to my bridges, I’ll greet you with 57 and fog. Don’t like it? Too bad. Turn around. Go home.
But you won’t. You want me. You know you’ll feel better as soon as you come over to the other side.
But I’ll still make you work. When you first met me, I welcomed you with what little I had. Clam shacks in the summer, HoJo’s in the winter (because everyone else was closed for the season).
Now I’m open for business year round. I’ve got a big mall, I’ve got all your chain and big box stores. If that’s why you’re here, please spend your money before you realize you’re here for the wrong reasons.
And if you walk one of my beaches with an iPod filling your head with noise, know that you’ll be missing the greatest symphony known to humankind: the sound of water meeting sandy land, mixed with the resonance of whatever breeze I offer at any given moment. You will never hear a more beautiful sound.
Now I’m getting ready for the influx. I’ll be welcoming back thousands of old friends. But I’m most looking forward to the first-timers. The little ones who get their first taste of a fried clam. Crack open their first lobster claw. Get knocked over for the first time by a wave. Sleep in a bed that’s not their own for the very first time.
They’ll love me. They’ll need me. And I’ll have them. For life.