As periodic milestones go, we have the calendar year which begins in January and is always a good starting point for making resolutions, going on a diet, or beginning (or ending) a relationship. At Village Players, we have the fiscal year ending July 31, at which point we close the books and start all over again. And then there is the fall, September, the “school year.” For many of us, fall is the season of renewal, even if you are no longer in school or have school-aged children. Even though fall starts almost nine months into the calendar year, the change of seasons, bringing with it crisp air and colored leaves, often causes us to focus on a new start and a fresh beginning.
For us theater-types, fall is also, of course, the start of a gala new “season.” The first set of tickets in your season ticket package. Maybe you have seats in a new location. Maybe you have joined a new committee. Maybe you’ve been elected to the Board and this is your first time around in a position of leadership–your proverbial “first rodeo,” if you will.
For others, fall perhaps signals an end. Within the past week, I have had three long time members of the club signal their departure to me. The point of this blog is not to single them out, to report on their departure, or to call for efforts to change their mind. It’s more about recognizing the human need for a fresh start from time to time, a release from ties that formerly seemed unbreakable, the vital chance to breathe new air.
Many of us languish in jobs or relationships that we wish we had the courage to set aside. I think each of us must daydream frequently about unfettered freedom; freedom from bosses, bills, neighbors, maybe even from family. A daydream is a mental vacation that serves an important purpose: We can “get away” without truly leaving, and try out new locations and new opportunities. Will they really work out for us? What happens in moving 3,000 miles away to a new location where we know no one and no one knows us? Could we leave behind absolutely everything and “start anew?” How “new” could “new” truly be? Don’t we take our personal and emotional luggage with us no matter where we go?
Hard to say…I suppose the answer is different for everyone. I am not sure who reads this blog, but I do want to acknowledge that everyone has the right to come and go as they need. Take a break, come back, or don’t. Village Players is 90 years old because every season starts anew. New shows, new people, new volunteers, new dreams…what are yours? –Gary Mach