Settling In

theatreI am as puffed up as a Gecko. My sweetie just got elected to the Board of the Navasota Theatre Alliance. He is going to serve a 3-year term as its IT Officer. He’ll be doing everything from tracking ticket sales to managing and hosting the organization’s website.

This is a big commitment for Ronnie who has been happy as a puppy staying close to the house. I’m the social butterfly of the family, but talent beats winging it, and my sweetie is an expert around computers. He’s excited about it, too, saying he is eager to make his contribution to our town’s cultural scene.

Of course, we will both be supporting the organization by attending the stage plays—as we have been doing since we arrived here three years ago. Thursday night, in preparation for Halloween, the play “The Count Will Rise Again, Dracula in Dixie” opens. It’s billed as a “riotous spoof of the Dracula legend as southern as boiled peanuts,” and runs through Oct. 23. Ticket information:  http://navasotatheatre.org/dracula/

Anyone who lives in a small town knows that it takes time for newcomers to become accepted in a community. When I was growing up in Huntsville, TX, I remember how new families moved to town and sent their children to school. It was hard to be the new kid, not knowing anyone and no one really welcoming you until they’d sized you up. I never had to face that kind of isolation because I attended all 12 grades in Huntsville public schools. But my dad attended a new school nearly every year when he was growing up because his father was a trouble-shooter for a retail chain and moved all over the country putting out fires. Daddy’s stories of loneliness made me sensitive to newcomers, and as much as a clueless, firmly rooted kid could, I tried my best not to be unfriendly or snobbish.

I think it’s easier for adults to assimilate into a new community. Ronnie and I have attended the Rattler football games, danced at the Western Club, attended several churches, shopped weekly at Brookshire Bros. grocery store, and banked at the local branch of Wells Fargo. We’ve gone to the movies at the Miller Theater (open only on the weekends), supported the annual Bubba Can Cook Music Fest and BBQ Cook-off, and celebrated the annual Texas Birthday Bash in downtown Navasota.

More recently we joined the Two Rivers Historical Foundation, dedicated to the preserving local history throughout Grimes County, and we thoroughly enjoy the camaraderie. We actually met one of Two Rivers members at a NTA dinner theatre, and she invited us to a Two Rivers meeting.

That’s how it works, I think. You move to a new place and start attending events and meeting neighbors. Once they see what nice folks you are, they invite you to get involved in the things that matter to them, to the community, and you settle in.

I appreciate NTA’s vote of confidence in Ronnie. I know he will make them proud.