Upfront • October 2012
The other day I phoned Surrey Pharmacy to refill a prescription. After Earl had requested all the necessary particulars, he said, much to my delight, “Happy birthday!” Well, of course he had that information right on his computer screen, but the fact that he made the connection and took a moment to wish me happy returns was a poignant reminder of why Augusta is such a wonderful place to live. It’s the small things, when they are all put together, that create an atmosphere of neighborhood and well-being that are rare in this era of instant information and electronic friendships.
And while I’m not sure Earl could put my name with my face at the pharmacy counter (I’m a relatively new customer), it occurred to me that his compassion for his customers and his commitment to small town values are the hallmarks of everyday life in Augusta.
On the pages of this, our annual Best of Augusta issue you’ll find all sorts of businesses and events and people who are equally representative of the kind of community that makes Augusta a place where people want to live. Many are born here, leave and return to work and raise their families. An impressive number are stationed here for jobs or military service and years later move back to retire. Still others never leave—confident there is no place else they’d rather live.
I belong in the group of folks who move to Augusta as a stopover along the road to some other more exciting and fast-paced way of life. But after a time the city has a way of winning you over—quietly, subtly, definitively. One morning you wake up and it’s home as surely as it is for those who were born here and never left. In some ways that transition is something I can’t quite explain. But in looking through the pages of the Best of Augusta issue, I find many of the reasons for Augusta’s siren song. We have an enviable number of good restaurants and retail shopping opportunities. One of the most breathtakingly beautiful outdoor recreation areas in the country is right in our backyard. World-class entertainment and cultural venues abound and all within a few minutes’ drive, with very affordable ticket prices. And as I like to say, there are more doctors than you can shake a stick at—many of whom are among the best in their fields. Most of whom share that same sense of compassion and commitment to their patients that Earl has for his customers.
Spend a few minutes looking over our readers’ picks for the Best of Augusta. And while you’re at it take time to come up with your own list of best things about living in Augusta.
Sherry Foster, Editor • email@example.com