Hildo: Thank You – Toledo City Paper

As the calendar moves to November and the weather finally turns to the normal coolness of fall, it’s time to take a break and think. The past eighteen months and more have been a time like no other in our lives. And guess what?

We did it!

It may be a bit early to celebrate, with aggressive and ever-changing little villains continuing to force their way through the human population. But more and more of us are being vaccinated, leaving less and less room for the baddest to incubate and grow. While we’re not totally out of the woods just yet, it makes sense this fall season to at least give thanks.

Here in the Marais, we have a lot to thank in these times of plague. These are just a few.

Survive the worst of the worst.
It could have been much more devastating. Many more lives could have been lost. Many other livelihoods could have been destroyed. TTown’s ongoing rebirth could have been stopped and reversed.

When Ohio closed, the economy shut down. But the Toleds are tough. We regrouped, supported the locals, curled up and learned to adapt. And we got out on the other side, maybe a little tired, but we got away with it.

The revitalization of downtown is back at full speed. The economic recovery continues and what could have been a catastrophic economic depression has instead been a pause and a reset.

Intelligent and responsible leadership.
One of the reasons the worst was avoided was a clear and sober assessment of the situation and positive steps to address it. Fiscal discipline was paramount and local leaders weathered the crisis without loss of services or massive layoffs.

Forward-thinking solutions, such as closing some streets for al fresco dining and the ability to consume alcoholic beverages, have helped support struggling businesses. Strict health mandates, while not always popular, were imposed because they were right. Civic leaders have come together to support the right balance between public health and economic sustainability.

Now that we can see an end to this tunnel, it is time for revitalization. And the local leadership, led by Mayor Wade, is looking to solidify the foundations of a livable city by spending the one-time major investment of federal dollars. Public safety, neighborhood revitalization, renovated parks and youth programs are all wise investments in our future.

At the end of the line. People who work hard and are resilient. This is what got us to this point. ‘Nuff said.

The best of TTown is back.
And so we are grateful that the best is back. Toledo’s mud hens and walleye, vibrant nightlife, rejuvenated riverside, successful Solheim Cup, Toledo Symphony and Toledo Zoo and Toledo Art Museum and the renovated Imagination Station, and much more that makes our little piece of mud our home.

But thanking wouldn’t be complete without one last thing. A big, fatty, self-basting turkey. And hoo boy do we have one too.

Yeah. The loud, self-absorbed belligerent mouth, the old man stinging, the coffee mug squeezing, moves the hearing-impaired to the airport notice, octogenarian with the attitude that breaks the veins, Carleton S.

As we head into a season of healing and giving thanks, let’s add one more thing for which we are grateful. After being beaten in November, this old carved bird will finally be on the pasture. And can become anonymous again.

So let it be.

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