I love watching the live webcam in downtown Troy, Ohio, my old home town. Take a look.
I must have circled that square a thousand times as a kid. On foot, by bike, and in car. With friends, with family, and by myself.
It doesn’t seem like much has changed in 30 years. The fountain, the old buildings, and the mural on the side of the Mayflower Theater behind Prouty Plaza – it all looks the same. You can even see the top of the Miami County Courthouse peeking up in the background.
Occasionally a car gets hemmed up in the middle of the circle reminding me how awkward navigating the square could be sometimes. As a new teenage driver, I was never sure if the traffic system was somehow flawed, or if I just wasn’t smart enough to understand exactly how it worked. Probably the latter.
Sometimes when I’m stuck on a work problem, I’ll pull up the live feed and watch the activity awhile. How many of these people are on their way to work, or going home, or just grabbing a quick bite? Are they happy or sad, and why? Are they lifelong residents of Troy, or just passing through? Is that pedestrian somebody I once knew?
But it’s not all about lenitive curiosity, it’s also the nostalgia. The memories of sounds and smells. Both of the square itself, and of everything along Main and Market streets leading away from the center of town. The post office, K’s Hamburger Shop, the library, and the Little Miami River, just to name a few.
It would be fun to coordinate with somebody to go around the square and wave, or moon the camera, or flip it off while watching live. That would be absolutely ridiculous.