Squeaky wheels do get grease
We complained about our streets and drainage, and look what’s happened and is happening. (For the unaware, a $6.4 bond issue to rebuild 11th Street was mandated by voters last month. The work will include improved drainage. On-going improvements to drainage have been in the works for several years.)
We complained about – and still complain about – long waits in the ferry line. One new 28-car ferry is about to go into service, and a second will follow close behind. The days of the six-car ferries and four-hour waits on summer weekends are long gone.
I could go back 25 years and recite a list of complaints/concerns that were aired, then resolved by the community, the city or both.
Just a few:
• A community marred by litter – the Port Aransas Clean Team, now Keep Port Aransas Beautiful, was born.
• Lack of recreational facilities – the Action Force formed and Roberts Point Park, with soccer fields, picnic areas, two pavilions, an observation tower and band shell, was built.
• Lack of adequate swimming facilities – the Recreational Facilities Task Force was created and, eventually, the city’s Parks and Recreation Department was revived. The result was the Port Aransas Community Park with the swimming pool and baseball field as the main attractions.
Unlike the Republicans and Democrats in Washington (who would, I believe, meet in front of a burning house in which they had friends and relatives, and debate the best way to rescue them until they all perished), Port Aransas has managed to hold some pretty lively debates and, in the end, move forward.
While there have been times when this community’s unique ability to disagree agreeably has been in jeopardy, it has managed to persevere and survive.
That, I think, has been the difference between Port Aransas and so many other communities that go round and round and never accomplish anything.
The subjects of some of our disagreements almost defy resolution. Seaweed is one of them. It’s complicated, and what to do with it that will make both sides of the argument happy has so far evaded us. But we carry on, inching forward in the hope of a resolution that will satisfy all concerned. I don’t see our lack of a final resolution dealing with a natural phenomenon over which we have little control as a case of going round and round and never accomplishing anything.
For the most part, the challenges we have faced as a community have been examined from all sides, debated, often heatedly, and resolved.
Port Aransas is not perfect, but at the end of the day, whether we won or lost, we can come together, enjoy the seabreeze and the sunset, and reload for the next round – ’cause it’s coming!
And if history repeats itself, Port Aransas will be better for it.
Cheers to Port Aransas, and long live our ability to disagree agreeably.
Mary Henkel Judson is editor and copublisher of the South Jetty. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org, (361) 749-5131 or P.O. Box 1117, Port Aransas, TX 78373.