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A Moving Memoir
Part Two – Anonymity Fail

Nancy Fisher | Ipswich, Massachusetts

This is the second of three articles on the author’s recent move from Del Mar to Ipswich.

In the first of this three-part article about our move to Ipswich, Massachusetts from Del Mar, I looked back at our arrival in Del Mar, and our plan to keep low profiles. Here’s how that went.

Within weeks of our arrival in 2010, residents of the Beach Colony learned that the North County Transit District (NCTD), with the gung-ho support of some City Council members, was seriously considering building a train stop just east of the tracks around 22nd-26th Streets – and a grass-roots movement developed overnight. The proposal was defeated, but not before we met the entire Beach Colony, the City Council, two candidates for the next CC (Lee Haydu and Terry Sinnott), most of the City Staff, and the editorial board of the Sandpiper.

In my continuing quest to not meet anyone, I volunteered for Del Mar Community Connections (DMCC) and signed us up for the Del Mar Foundation’s “First Thursdays” cultural events. With those two moves, we met almost everyone involved with the City’s two most visible non-profits, and soon found ourselves hosting art shows, jazz parties, and fundraisers. “If anyone in Del Mar hasn’t been to this house,” Mike said, “it’s their fault.”

Around that time, overcome by enthusiasm about a specific DMCC Program, I submitted an unsolicited article to the Sandpiper, and was encouraged (thank you, Shirley King) to keep contributing. Soon I was on the editorial board and spent the next several years interviewing everyone involved with DMCC and all of their programs, including two of the fascinating members of the founding group, Nancy Weare and Ann Silber.

When I’d exhausted that, I interviewed fire captains, City Managers, lifeguards, Public Works Directors, Traffic Control Officers, Design Review Board members, the management of Jake’s restaurant, the lovely Barbara Zucker, who runs the Powerhouse – and who could forget my riveting articles on new parking meters, mosquito abatement, and flag etiquette?

It was starting to feel like high school again, and I loved it. Small dinner parties with the guy who was Most Likely to Succeed, co-chairing committees with the Class Clown, watching the Cutest Couple, Dan and Robin Crabtree, still looking all googly-eyed at each other after 39 years of marriage. I met the parents of kids I’d gone to high school with – Carol Mason, Pat Jacoby, Ann Silber, and Sarah Dubin- Vaughn, and caught up with friends I’d never completely lost touch with, like Marnie Mahoney.

I was confident that when my neighbor Rachel Reed celebrated her 100th birthday, I could call Mayor Dave Druker and count on him to attend and proclaim away, and that a friend from the hood who’s a local television news anchor would send a crew to cover it for the nightly news.

And now we find ourselves newcomers in Ipswich, Ma, a small, historic New England town rife with residents fighting over dog poop and potholes (the town blog for complainers is called “Ipswich Piss & Moan”), wondering if we should hide or join. You’ll find out in the December issue of the Sandpiper.



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