Where I Come From
I grew up not thinking twice about where I lived in relation to other people. Most can relate I would say because, as children we all have a wonder-filled innocence. Everything is right there in front of you for the taking. As I went through my teenage to young adult years, I constantly heard friends and peers around me talking about how they couldn't wait to get out of our county. With just a movie theater and bowling alley for entertainment, there was little variety for socializing when the weekend rolled around. I worked a job through high school, so I rarely had a weekend night off to begin with, but the facts remained; in a small town, extracurricular activities are hard to come by.
After moving away my second year of college, I was able to test the waters outside of my comfort zone and surprisingly, I was pleasantly satisfied...at first. I began to get homesick. I was not only missing my family and everything I had ever known, but I was missing the familiarity of where I grew up. Some people love the city life because of the night scene and social networking, and I don't blame them because you can't get that broad scale of intermingling in a small town where everyone already knows everybody and their mother. Living in a city with those big bright lights and busy sounds can be mesmerizing at times, but I seem to stay drawn to the quiet country roads where you can roll the window down and drive by the moonlight on a sweet summer night. Those same country roads lead me straight to my most valued possessions which are my family and childhood memories.
Looking back now, I can see why I gravitated back to this place. When one realizes how much you miss seeing the stars at night, hearing tree frogs and crickets in harmony when you lay down to sleep or seeing deer in your yard as you leave for work in the morning, it makes coming home a no brainer. Please don't get me wrong; cities are beautiful in their own industrial way, and they have their own magical wonder, but when you are from the country, it is hard to stay away for too long. I not only enjoy but take comfort in knowing that my family is within just a few minutes driving distance away, and I appreciate running into people I don't often see in town for a quick hello when the world gets so busy with life.
Where I come from nothing is extravagant, but everything is endearing. From the local farmer's market to the quaint coffee shop on the corner to the local library -there is a certain amount of character and security that I get knowing I won't find it anywhere else. Neighbors know your name, and they are there to check in on you when you are going through a hard time like losing a loved one. Where I come from each new generation is fed from the same garden as the former and grows up playing tag in their grandparent's yard just like their parents before them. It is more common than not to marry someone you have known since grade school and to have babies that grow up and fill the same classrooms with your own childhood teachers. Where I come from, people stop to help if they see someone with car trouble on the side of the road, even if they are in a hurry to be somewhere else. Meals are cooked at home and Sunday afternoons are spent with family after church. It isn't uncommon to see a tractor driving down the road in the summer, and then to say grace over the garden's harvest when the cold winter comes. Where I come from, you can find a little piece of heaven sippin' sweet tea and loungin' on a porch swing while taking in a Carolina sunset after a long day at work. There is room to grow and peace in the midst of chaos. Where I come from, time moves slower, and it is a most desirable thing when we find life is all too suddenly passing us by.