Dispatches from Winters, 2040

A parody feature article of life in Winters in 2040.

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The TrashBots are on the fritz again, only picking up recycling and leaving the garbage behind. It’s not the first time that this has happened, and the town had begun to have an odor. Where once the city of Winters would stink on occasion due to the various productions of fruit and nuts, this was the constant reek of a much larger and somewhat neglected metropolis; what Winters has, over the years, become.

It all began when somebody in a position of power realized that the city of Winters could be rebranded as “The Gateway to Napa.” The mom-and-pop establishments were gradually pushed out to make way for high-end boutiques and eateries. The leisurely pace of following a tractor down Railroad Avenue in attempts to get to work on a Tuesday morning has now been replaced by an affair that includes multiple crowded intersections and language can be heard that would make a New Yorker blush.

The extreme focus on the touristy downtown, left the rest of the town’s features in disrepair while the properties headed in the way of shambles. But, the town still functioned in the ways that it had for decades. Events like Youth Day and the Earthquake Festival reigned supreme, all while the social aspects of the city remained intact as its core value.

The tipping-point came when the land north of the city was sold for development unbeknownst to its citizens. Eight hundred acres that was to be occupied by 750 new residents, all dwelling within 3,000 new homes. This doubled the size of Winters within just a few years and brought with it a 100 percent rise in crime and taxation placed upon its residents. Putah Creek Café has sat empty and vacant now for years. People prefer weekly Sustenance Shots over the hassle of actually sitting down and eating (let alone talking with others face-to-face). The local farms and orchards that once were the lifeblood of Winters, were bought out by land-developers and have since become high-rises and office buildings to meet the growing economic need.

It is saddening. A proud, prosperous and passionate agricultural town once sat in the Sacramento valley, only to be transmogrified into a towering megalopolis by greed and consumerism. Winters has become an urban sprawl, something that was once despised by its residents. It has lost everything that it once stood for. It has forgotten its roots that once held it so firmly to this Earth.

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