By Virginia Rice
I’ve heard the rumors about the Trainsong district of Eugene; drugs, poor community, violence, et cetera. An acquaintance of mine grew up near the neighborhood mini mart and he had told me multiple stories of gang violence and other such things. I expected the worst but although I found some signs of those rumors, I was pleasantly surprised about the positive attitude of the neighborhood members.
I decided to go to the Red Cross, Oregon Pacific Chapter, located in Trainsong for my first report. I went with the mindset that I would hear horror stories about the local area. I instead found a group of people just ready to help anyone who came in their door. I had an interview with the director of the chapter within two minutes of pulling into the parking lot. He gave me a lot of information about what their specific chapter does for the local community. I was really interested personally and even picked up an application for volunteering.
I am not sure what to expect for the rest of the term. Though Trainsong has a bad reputation it is small and I am worried I will not be able to find enough interesting stories to write about. I have a lot of ideas in mind for stories on local businesses and how they like the area but I am not sure how interesting they will be to read. I am already having fears about writing so much for the term. I know that my weakest skill is writing and I am working very hard to fix that. I just hope my reporting skills can get to passing level.
I know people in this neighborhood are probably shyer towards ‘reporters’ then most people in other community areas. I am nervous for walking up to strangers and asking questions, but am excited to hear the responses. I really hope to find compassionate people who love their neighborhood and can show me the positive side of their homes. I want my posts to create a new overall positive image for Trainsong.