Life in a Small Town

sitting on front porch I was driving thru town on my bi-weekly Avon deliveries this past week and got to thinking of how nice it is to live in a community where most everyone knows your name or at least who your family is. Most people even know whose dog has just wandered into their yard, which isn’t always a good thing if he’s chasing their cat! We all have so many of the same memories here; the schools we attended, the grocery stores we shop in, where we go for a good steak dinner, and who married who last week, plus a hundred other things that we take for granted. So many of the men in our small community have served together on the local volunteer fire department and rescue squad for many years. There are still people working in our hospital that were there when my first child was born over 30 years ago. We’ve seen our small town grow and develop new businesses, and sadly, have seen some of those businesses shut down after a short time. We’ve watched stores close that were here for decades, handed down thru the generations, but still many stay and take pride in what remains. Teenagers can still be seen shooting baskets at the city park while the little ones play on the swings and slides nearby. A crowd still gathers at the baseball field to cheer for the home team, even when the bank thermometer shows it’s 90 degrees out. There’s standing room only at the funeral home when another beloved soul takes that final journey home, and we’ve all got our favorite story to tell about them when we drop off a casserole at their house. Many young people say they can’t wait to graduate and leave their home towns all across this country, headed for the bright lights of the big city, ready to find their fame and fortune there. In a few years, some of them soon realize they don’t receive that warm welcome or find that compassionate friend so easily out there in the big world. If they’ve found that special someone to share their life, they start thinking of raising a family. They may come home to visit Mom and Dad and notice the gray in their hair or the wrinkles that weren’t there the last time they saw them and decide that growing up in a small rural community wasn’t so bad after all. As the saying goes, “Life happens when you’re making other plans”, and to be fully present in each day is to really live. Not regretting the past or worrying about the future, but just appreciating each breath you take and each sunrise you are allowed to experience. That, my friends, is life on the back roads. –Debbie Dovel 6/08/15

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