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This past Saturday when we were forced out of our cozy weekend spots on the couch by holding yet another open house in hopes that the one person who wants to buy our house would just walk in off the street, we took the opportunity to visit my brother in law and his family.  They were at a bar-b-cue held by the little church based school their kid goes to.  The little town where this private church school resides is also my childhood hometown. Of course this spawned the usual conversation between my husband and I on the way there about what church we would tell people we attend since we knew someone would ask. Someone ALWAYS asks.  This time we decided to tell everyone we were Buddhists.  That usually will shut up any follow up fire and brimstone preaching. One would think that going back home would feel great. You know, the smell of the country air, it  feels like home kind of BS. I’ve always told my husband that I would love to move to the country. Have some land and a horse. I grew up in a horse ranch so this isn’t a stretch for me. But as I stood out in the flat playground area, with the wind practically blowing me off my feet because there wasn’t a shade tree for miles, checking out the neighbors trailer home, I realized something. I’ve been suburbanized!

I like having neighbors. I like not knowing them very well or at least being g able to pick the ones I want to enjoy my time with. In the country your limited to whomever your property line is attached to. That or you can choose driving sometimes very long distances to find a friend. Another suburban bonus is that your friends don’t mind visiting you. The country can get really lonely.  I forgot about that in my urging to be surrounded by land and not people.

I also enjoy the activities that are within a 10 minute drive in any direction.  Who doesn’t love the fact that their ice cream will make it home before it melts and a cab ride home won’t cost such a fortune that it’s just better to sleep it off in a parking lot?  I enjoy waking up in the morning and not having to plan my day around the hour long drive each way to make it somewhere interesting.  I enjoy actually being able to visit the big brand name department stores in person and not just in a catalog.  I enjoy being able to return items to said stores also without hassle or paying for shipping.  I like restaurant options and I like a solid nightlife with live music.  I like pavement.  The dirt road that my house was on growing up tossed so much dust up every day that dusting and keeping surfaces clean was an impossible tasks.  However, it did provide an activity for us kiddos to do when we got bored, which was often.

I’ve always liked the idea of raising my kids on a ranch like I was raised.  I look back fondly on the animals and the chores which was how I earned my allowance, although I despised them at the time.  It really was a great way to learn respect for life and hard work.  But I was also lonely as a kid.  I remember too many times throwing frisbees and balls in the field and having no one to catch them and throw them back.  My loneliness was in a lot of ways part of what molded the person I am today. I had to learn how to entertain myself with my brain.  Do I regret the way I was raised?  Not a bit.  In many ways I will always cherish it.  Would I have changed a few things however, as a kid?  Definitely.  I would have lived a few miles closer to town for starters.  I would have had other kids as neighbors to play with.  I would have had someone to throw my frisbee back.  But I would have missed my horse.

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