Today was a great day to take a drive and escape the congestion of the city. It was as if we lived in a time with no television, no air conditioning and a brand new convertible. The mercury was expected to stay under 100 degrees and the long flat roads of Texas called out. What better reason to drive than no reason at all. Southeast was the direction and within an hour of driving the terrain had changed markedly. There were beautiful trees, rolling hills and nary a car on the road. That’s when the fun began.
To say it was like living in another time and place was the theme of the day. First stop, local gas station on the main strip. As the gas pump worked to fill our tank, we went into the store for a break and some refreshments. While waiting for my cohort to choose a drink, I noticed the cute young blond in front of me and thinking to myself, “She is very well put together for a girl in a small podunk town like this,” until I noticed she was purchasing a 90 ounce Slurpee and two large bags of pork rinds. I tried to snap a picture, but I was seconds behind as she climbed two feet up into her pickup truck where her redneck boyfriend awaited his snicky snacks.
Next stop, the town square. Saturdays are good days to explore new places, find hidden gems, shop, eat, and enjoy the hustle and bustle of a small town. We headed for the local farmer’s market which sets up on the sidewalk in front of the courthouse on the town square. When we arrived, we found nothing. No hustle, no bustle, not even a freakin’ watermelon. After illegally crossing the street to avoid a toothless woman in a cowboy hat, we found a swanky espresso cafe / diner / wi-fi hot spot / antique shop on the corner. Our first mistake was actually asking the young women running the place (one with her infant baby) where the farmer’s market was. The second mistake was waiting for the answer. The response from both women was “uh, oh, um . . . ooooh.” After a few of those, we headed in the direction we thought was part of the answer only to find the local Walmart. Not even close ladies! Now we know where they shop because apparently the farmer’s market closes at noon. The square was not entirely a bust. We found the local Chamber of Commerce open. The town square was as quiet as the day was long. Oh, and at the espresso . . . . shop, you can get statuary for your garden or the run of the mill coral for your bathroom decor all in one place.
Life can be sheltered living in the big city and vice versa. Young folk in small towns enjoy a night in the city, a chance to live in the fast lane for a few hours, and city folk enjoy the slow pace and quiet bliss of a small town to lower their blood pressure. They are worlds apart however. One day, we will move back in time again and despite the flaws in social skills, we will return to the espresso . . . . shop, if it still exists, and the cotton gin, if there are no burning crosses out front. For now, go out and explore, but remember, to each his own.
In case your imagination doesn’t work and from the people who created “People of Walmart”, try “Your Kid’s Art Sucks.” http://www.yourkidsartsucks.com/.