Chilton County Life- Sweet as a Peach

Published 1:42 pm Friday, July 22, 2022

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By Elisabeth Altamirano-Smith | Community Columnist

Chilton County peaches are still in full harvest but the “dog days” of summer are coming to a close. Talk of “school starting back” signifies that autumn, and football, is just around the corner. Summer has been fruitful in Chilton County and living so closely to “farm to table” makes one realize the simple beauties of living in God’s Country.

Graduating high school seniors might have big dreams of living life in the city once they finish school, but Chilton County offers something rare and precious that cannot be found elsewhere — togetherness. This summer we have all collectively come together for the first time since pre-COVID and fully enjoyed the blessing of our friends, family and neighbors. Chilton County’s list of summer activities made us grateful for something that we all took for granted before COVID — the freedom to come together and enjoy each other’s company.

This summer has been a season-long celebration of graduation parties, swimming at the river, Peach Festival activities (which included the entire City of Clanton coming together to paint murals), a wide variety of artists at the Chilton County Art Council’s Art Show, VBS meetings galore and the in-the-moment realization of how blessed we are to be in one another’s physical presence.

For the first time in years, this summer I was able to sit in a lawn chair alongside friends while watching the Peach Parade and enjoy being pelted with endless candy. I was also able to visit a dear friend of mine in her 90’s that I haven’t been able to hug since 2019.

This summer felt differently because for the first time we knew the blessings we had been deprived of.

The world continues to turn around us and advertises daily the conflicts and evils that other areas face. Chilton County might be behind in many ways, but it is on the forefront of love, charity and friendship. This summer has been awe-inspiring to see multiple churches and organizations come together to feed those that have been affected by food costs and shortages including The Gathering at 6th Street Warehouse, Trinity Episcopal Church and the Bread of Life Food Pantry.

As we all count down the last of this year’s summer days, let us be thankful for the goodness that Chilton County has returned to us. It is a sweetness to be savored.