Miranda Lambert sings, “Everybody dies famous in a small town.” Being home this week for spring break reminded me of some things that make my small hometown charming in its own special way. Here’s my “10 Ways to Know You Grew Up in a Small Town”!
- If it’s not at Walmart, you don’t need it… and sometimes you go just for the fun of it (and you know you’ll run into at least three people you know when you go). A trip to Wally World always makes the day special.
- Friday night sporting events are mandatory, even if you don’t like sports. Everyone in town will be in the stands at football games in the fall and basketball games in the winter. Go, team!
- When the festival comes to town, it’s everyone’s favorite time of year. In my hometown of Pikeville, KY, we have the annual Hillbilly Days festival. The small town transforms with thousands of out-of-town visitors and hundreds of vendors to celebrate our heritage while we support the Shriners. Nothing beats eating a funnel cake while you stand in line to ride the Gravitron!
- The fanciest dinner you can get is a hot dog and a shake at the local dairy bar. My home town favorite is Dorsie’s Dairy Bar. Yum!
- You can’t get away with anything because everyone knows your mom. So, I learned quickly not to even try it.
- You’re forced to pool through your best friend’s exes for date options because there aren’t enough decent men in your town… and at least that’s better than dating your cousin.
- Everyone has one of three last names. In my small town, everyone seems to be a Justice, Thacker, or McCoy (and they’re the real McCoy). Family reunions are basically a whole county-wide celebration.
- Who needs a movie when you can four-wheel up a mountain and stare at the stars?
- If you’re broken down on the side of the road, there will always be someone willing to help you get where you’re going. Someone who knows you will probably stop, but in a small town, people who don’t even know you jump to lend a hand.
- They say everything you need to know you learn in kindergarten. In a small town, you make forever friends when you’re only 5 years old. You rely on them while you grow up and become your own person. I met my BFF when I was only 4, and I know she will always be there for me when I need her, even if we don’t go to the same school.
It’s kind of a bummer that the nearest mall is about 2 hours away from my hometown. When people ask where I’m from, I have to pull out a map to show them. These things are just fine by me because you can take the girl out of the mountains, but you can’t take the mountains out of the girl.