Getting to like you
Getting to hope you like me!
Forgive me, but that old chestnut from The King and I seemed like an appropriate title for this post about my experience canvassing this past week.
Before I get into what that experience has been, I should remind you that I am a first-time candidate for office. While I did go door to door as part of the ballot petition process, this was a little different. This time I wasn’t asking for a signature, I was asking for something so much more precious: your vote. And it is precious because it represents so much: your confidence in me that I have the skills to do a good job, your belief that I will exercise good judgement if I’m elected, and your trust that I will hold to the values that I’ve expressed. With stakes that high, you can forgive me, I hope, for being a little nervous about it.
But all that apprehension has evaporated after hours spent in the doorways, vestibules and foyers of my neighbors in Ward 4! As always the kindness and graciousness of fellow Canandaiguans is what stands in high relief. There was the gentleman who disagreed with my comments about the Finger Lakes Resort developer (read them yourself here) but who still invited me in for a glass of water. And the lovely couple who invited me into the air conditioning when they could see me suffering after 15 minutes of conversing about overweight vehicles on Buffalo Street. (It was 85 degrees with what felt like 10,000% humidity at the time!) I spoke with a lot of folks on a lot of topics, but the common thread was this: our neighbors care deeply about Canandaigua, and while they think our city is a wonderful place to live, they (and I) know that there is still more we can accomplish together.
But as upbeat as many folks were, there was still a great deal of concern about the challenges facing us and uncertainty that Canandaigua is headed in the right direction. I heard that people are anxious about the opioid crisis that is impacting so many families in our community. I listened to moms and dads worried that Canandaigua and the region around it might not offer enough opportunities to ensure that their kids would stay and raise their families here. And of course, I heard that the birdcage has got to go!
In the coming days and weeks, I’ll be adding more posts about my thoughts on how I can contribute to solution to the challenges facing our city. But for now, I’ll sign off by expressing heartfelt gratitude to my Ward 4 neighbors. Thank you for coming to the door. Thank you for both your time and the water bottles! Thank you for sharing what you think city government does right and what you think I could play a role in improving. To those who said I earned their vote, thank you! To those for whom I didn’t, thank you just the same for sharing your insights about why: you’ll make me a better candidate for it.
I’ve got six more weeks of canvassing to go, so I hope you’ll be home when I drop by. Thanks for reading!