John Mellencamp once sang fondly of life in a small town. But there are some things he forgot to mention.
You know you live in a small town when the guy in the Ford truck runs into the gas station for a soda and leaves his vehicle open and running. When you feel you need to dress better for the super market because it’s a sure thing you’ll meet someone you know. When people come to a full stop at a stop sign and expect the other person to go first.
You live in a small town when the clerk at the dry cleaners or the video store or the bank knows you by name and you spend a minute to chat. When there are few sidewalks and fewer people on foot. When the summer landscape is dotted with veggie and fruit stands and you ask the farmer if the corn was picked that morning. If it wasn’t, you buy something else.
You live in a small town when parking on the main street is free. When the dime store really is a dime store and not some Dollar General or Dollar Plus franchise. When you drive almost an hour to shop at a mall with brand name stores in it. Or when you visit the Big City and the traffic, the noise, and the impersonal interactions make you glad you live in a small town.