I grew up in a small town (aren’t those song lyrics?) and I’ve been gone for 22 years. During that time I’ve lived in a few different towns of varying sizes. For the last 14 years I’ve lived in a medium sized city and I hate it.
There are several reasons I live where I do. The primary being that’s where my job is. I could easily live in a small town but I’d have a long commute to work every day and I don’t want that. Maybe one day when my wife and I retire we will move to a small town and enjoy our golden years in peace. But for now I’m left with just day trips to visit my mom. During a recent trip I saw something (check the photo above) that made me realize how much I miss living in a small town.
You Know Everyone in A Small Town
This can be a double edged blade. Many people who grow up in a small town hate the fact that you know everyone. But I like it. I like the fact that I can drive down the street and know who lives in a particular house. I don’t just know them…I know their family history and also their relatives. This gives me a sense of security that I don’t have where I live now.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not naive enough to think that just because I “know” someone means they aren’t a threat. But at least I have a fair amount of knowledge about their history. The flipside??? They know me and my history. This is a negative to many people. They don’t want people discussing how they live their lives. This is what draws them to big cities, no one knows anything about you.
Growing up in a small town I was able to ride my bicycle into town and it wasn’t a problem at all. But where I live, I refuse to let my kids ride out of sight of my house. I just can’t take the chance. I really would love to live in my hometown and feel better about letting my kids explore the way I did.
Traffic?? What Traffic??
Currently, I live 5 miles from my workplace and it takes me only 10-15 minutes to get there in the morning. But it takes 30-45 minutes in the afternoon. I hate traffic!!! This is something you don’t have to worry about in a small town.
In my hometown, you are never more than 5 minutes from anything as long as you live near town. I can’t imagine getting off work and being home in 5 minutes. I figure that I spend over 3 hours a week in my car in during my afternoon commute. There are many things I would rather be doing than sitting in traffic.
A Helping Hand
Here’s an experiment. Park on the side of the road and put your hood up. Do this in a small town and then do it in a large city. Next, time how long it takes for someone to stop and help. I would wager to say you’ll be waiting a lot longer in the big city. People in small towns are much more willing to help each other. I believe this is due to the strong sense of community that you get in a small town.
Regardless of what you need, you generally can find plenty of people to help out when you live in a small town. If I were moving heavy furniture out of my house now…I doubt my neighbors would even offer to hold the door for me. This isn’t a knock on them it’s just the fact that there isn’t a strong connection with people in a bigger city. But in a small town people will go out of their way to help you.
There you have it, my reasons I miss living in a small town. I hope to one day make it back to my hometown. I know people who say they will never go back but I miss it and I miss the people.
What about you? Do you miss your hometown?