I love writing this blog. WordPress is the platform I use. If I drank, and I don’t, whoever stays up all night figuring out how to make it harder and less sense, makes me say, “I’ll have a double sweet tea on the rocks!”
I was bummed because the number of followers WordPress showed remained the same for what felt like years. Not too long ago the person who keeps track of such things must have showed up for work because a new number appeared. 1331 – now that’s more like it. If you read the blog regularly you know that I write (and talk on the podcast: anchor,fm/stepheny-houghtlin) about saving the commercial and residential architecture of Rocky Mount, NC; the point being that the benefits of preservation, restoration and repurposing are economic drivers in the revitalization of Rocky Mount. If you are involved with the revitalization of other Main Streets, we are all facing the same obstacles. After a few years of writing this blog, Mainstreetrockymount.com, people began to introduce me by saying, “This is Stepheny Houghtlin, she is our biggest Cheerleader.” I love this designation.
I look at the platforms I use on social media: Facebook, Instagram, Podcasting and Blogging as a big game board. I asked a college granddaughter, who was taking a social media class, to help me download the free WordPress program. (Younger people are now hard-wired with all the technology involved in social media.) I took that first step into the unknown and trusted I could learn how to navigate, with plenty of help, the mysteries of this vast communication tool. It is great fun and I’m getting better at promoting the passion I have that Rocky Mount’s Main Street and beyond can be the light in the sky for Eastern North Carolina. This is not some place you pass through on the train, but a destination.
I grew up outside Chicago with its magnificent architecture created by some of the greatest architects in the world. I think of myself as your keen observer, your researcher, your tour guide looking at the shotgun and bungalow housing in need of a new life. I am enthusiastic so you will be too. I believe in the downtown stakeholders and write about them, so you come to know them and support their businesses. I know you get sick to death talking about the City Council and City Management mistakes, but political junkie that I am, I’m there for you. There are moments you might be proud of or embarrassed by what I want to say out loud, but don’t. Things like. “Give it a rest!”
I get hopping mad over the doggy business that goes on. I send my cheerleading uniform to the cleaners while I recharge, but I always believe. We need everyone, black, white, polkadot, purple, green, it matters not, believing together to have a truly successful revitalization. I admit to a point of view that is saying in the case of the city council elections, IT IS TIME FOR A CHANGE. You may hate politics but the reality in Rocky Mount is that if you are not involved in some way….join the organization Preservation Rocky Mount for $35 a single membership….. you get what you’ve got. We can all honor and respect the past, but it is TODAY that matters when building a future that is significant.