We inadvertently moved to the smallest town in the middle of one of the most densely populated places. We knew the size of Haddon Township; but it wasn’t until we really lived here that our town revealed itself for what it was:
Mayberry mixed with Stars Hollow.
It is also a place where tradition and family and love for one another is the guiding force.
It is not that my town is perfect—trust me there are plenty of wankers. I might be one of those wankers. And it’s okay, because it takes all kinds, right?
It is just that it is a home.
Our kids run wild in their neighborhoods. They know all the school traditions, as told to them by older siblings and neighbors and parents, who grew up here. Generations live here. Everyone’s prom date from 1994 lives here. And while, I am still a newbie (6 years this August!), it is the type of place where you walk in a door and everybody knows your name.
I never thought I’d like this. I traditionally enjoy flying low and solo. No roots or entanglements or affiliations. (I’ve been burned by affiliations; so I mostly avoid.) But I love it. I love walking around our town’s elementary school field day and every few feet seeing someone I know and adore. Old friends, new friends, acquaintances, soccer moms and Girl Scout parents—all these wonderful people who know my name.
And it’s not the notarity; it’s just that we all know each other.
For the first time in my life, I am not alone.
And truly, friends, all I’ve ever wanted for myself is a big huge family and I’ve got that, at home, in our small town in the middle of bigness.