Sunday, June 3, 2012

For the love of a town

I realized the other day that I am in a love story. Not between me and my husband, or even me and my sweet daughter, although I most certainly am writing stories with them too, but between me and my town. It may seem strange. I'm sure it does, in fact. But I am finding that this life-long city girl is quickly becoming a small-town gal.

If I were asked to define exactly what it is that makes me love Huron it would be hard to pinpoint. It is all the little things, I think. The way the wind sweeps over the prairie grasses just before haying. Long bike rides down pitted roads and gravel lanes, shady oaks, elms and cottonwoods sheltering from the warm sun. Cool mason jars of iced coffee, sitting in a swing on our lawn with a friend. Brilliant pink peonies bursting at their seems, spilling over onto sidewalks. Neighbors slowing down their cars when they see your daughter playing in the yard. Fresh heirloom tomato plants in the garden. Getting the two-finger "farmer hello" from many cars you meet. Strangers in the store helping me pick out the perfect weed killer for that pesky wood vine. Friends who love you from the core of their being and want to truly do life together. Walking in the store and talking to people in not one, but three languages. The steady background hum of a night of drag racing at the fairgrounds. A certain neighbor pausing on her daily commute to peek at us through our windows (but she says she can't see anything). Neighborhood cats walking through our yard and entertaining us with their hunting antics. Silly rumors spreading around town (at least they care enough to talk about us) and the people that care so much they simply must know if they are true. Our sweet, tiny house, solid, beautiful and just the right size. Having guests over and realizing that the "bang" of cargo cars joining up at the depot doesn't even phase me anymore.

In the words of Kathleen Norris, one of my favorite authors, "It is not special, but absolutely ordinary. And that, too, is grace." (from The Quotidian Mysteries)
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