Imagine 6 oldish men sitting in a coffee shop, reading the paper, eating breakfast and laughing with each other.
See a dress shop owner named Loyce who has been in business since 1985. See Daryl strolling up and down Main Street, doing Chamber of Commerce business.
Also there are Mike and Fred who have owned the local movie theater since the 30s. Watch those little girls play on the sidewalk so their Mama can run in and buy her bestie a candle at Made.
See the 17 year old boys riding the float in our annual Homecoming Parade. See the girl that does everyone's nails in town. Frank the barber. Sandy, the lady on the block you don't mess with but want in your corner. See the sheriff and Mayor shaking hands as they eat yet another breakfast at Carols.
There go the newlyweds who decided to get their new dishes at Vintage Treasures. Picture fall and the leaves are the prettiest shade of orange God ever made. Feel the warmth of the people as we gather up and down Main Street for Halloween. You see the Baptist Church? She is giving away hot dogs and a cold drink just because she can. Down the road a bit the kids are playing sports at the school, Mama is making supper, dogs are barking faintly, waves are being thrown out at each of us with smiles. Ahhhh and Christmas in this town. It's lit up like a Rockwell Painting.
It is a hallmark movie town. It is a painting. This is WAVERLY. This is home. This is Humphreys County. This is where my grandparents put down roots. It is where my Mama met my Daddy. It's where the love of their life started. It is where I chose to move to and put down my own roots when we started having babies. It is where my boys year after year told me when they grow up they wanna be like Wayne, our ranch foreman who we will miss something awful. It's where I have greeted thousands of tourists and this town has welcomed them all with open arms. This isn't a place I am talking about because of the disaster. It is a place I talked about the moment I arrived and haven't stopped. I will never give up on her, I will never leave her. I love her. She is my home. I intend to help save her life and every person who needs help in it. Sound bold? I am bold. I am hopeful and I am here to encourage and give. Not alone. With my family by my side. From Catholic to Atheists. It makes no difference. Yellow, red, black or white. Equal. You are seen. They say "we need someone who will hand this Money out fairly!" Who better than someone that loves this town and her people the way we do. Who loves her people. Who is her people and have been singing her praises for years. I love Waverly. I love Humphreys County. My Grandmother taught me how to love her. My children will grow up here. I won't let her go. She will live on. We will live on.