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Macon, Georgia: Take One

The pickup trucks, everywhere.

Chromed. Uplifted. Ginormous wheels and tires. Throaty exhaust. Aggressive vehicles… and drivers to match.

Why so many? And SO gussied up?

“It’s not real exciting around here,” explained ace saleswoman at the splendid Ace Hardware on Forsyth Road. “Our trucks are an adrenaline rush.” (Not to mention, she said, a perfect, broadside target for the ubiquitous deer.)

The Macon community is human-scaled, rarely in a hurry. Not slow; just measured.

Polite is good here, most encounters at least so far. Nice community fabric to build a future on.

Some say the town is “cliquish.” That seems to connote long-timers versus not-so long-timers, as in 40-50 years. Go figure.

My wife has thrown the warm and welcoming members of our new seniors sub-community, stately Carlyle Place, for a bit of a loop.

The most senior remember her as Cynthia Jane Struby, daughter of the late and distinguished, long-time leader (president and publisher) of The Macon Telegraph. Daughter also of the late Jane Spearman Struby, every ounce a gracious, Macon mainstay of long lineage.

That smart Cynthia Jane went off to her own solid newspaper career in Columbia, S.C., Alexandria, Va. (managing editor before age 30), Charlotte and finally Myrtle Beach, S.C. She retired to raise her two boys, now men.

First with her closest high school friends, then at Furman, then later in newspapers, people called her Struby, not Cynthia. She liked it. (“I don’t see myself looking like a Cynthia.”)

She was “Struby” when I met and married her while we were both editors at The Charlotte Observer. (That was 38 years ago, for the curious.)

So here we are at Carlyle, our first week in town, arriving from Tampa. Struby is a clique “cross-dresser,” Old Maconite returning from 45-plus years in the Wilderness of other places..

Heads are spinning at wonderful Carlyle Place.

But residents will come to remember it’s “Struby,” not Cynthia.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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