2018.10.01

I live in a small beach town. Technically, it’s a city, with its own mayor and municipal government and everything, but it’s only a handful of city blocks carved into the south side of the hill. In the ‘50s, it was tiny beach shacks. Today, the same families who bought those shacks are still here because now they’re the only ones who can still afford it.

Recently, that municipal government dropped the long-standing height restrictions on new construction, and our city is changing fast. I’ve lost count of the number of cranes visible in the skyline. Some hate the new buildings; others know change is inevitable.

Since construction started, we walk with our eyes down to avoid the cracks in the sidewalk; eyes up to watch the building with awe. It’s the elderly men I notice most. Like little kids fascinated by any machine larger than them, they peek through fences and stand in the middle of the walk, heads tilted upwards.

“They’re going to touch the sky,” a man said to me today as I walked by.

Some hate the new buildings; others remember when such wonders weren’t possible.