Monday, June 8, 2009

Small Town Talk

We live in a small town, so small that our baby will increase the population by 0.5% all by itself. To put that into perspective, it takes over 41,000 births to have the same impact on New York City. We moved here nearly three years ago because we could not resist buying a recently renovated church, and the town came with the church. The town is mostly cute and quiet. People seem nice and have begun to talk to us a little more than in the beginning. Originally we seem to have been viewed as quirky outsiders. One of the first questions my neighbor asked me was if “I was city folk or country folk?” I was unsure how to respond, but I am pretty sure I have unwittingly proven to be the former. I am Joel Fleischman.

We work in a college town about 12 miles away. This is where our friends live, we shop, and we often eat. On weekends, when not traveling or working, we usually hike or attend events in the college town. Therefore, the majority of our waking hours are spent outside our small hometown. This seems to be the case with many of the other younger townsfolk who, like us, were drawn to the town’s historic homes.

I am beginning to suspect that our limited presence in town has made people begin to construct our lives for themselves. Fortunately, my real life is happier than their fictitious one. In the past month two separate people have offered me sympathy over the death of my dog or Amanda leaving me. Everyone assumes small towns are great places to live because everyone knows each other. I do not deny that living in a small town can be enjoyable, but in my experience how well they know each other is greatly exaggerated.


Unknown said...

This makes me laugh. Maybe b/c you went down to one car, they thought one of you left? I don't understand the dog though, b/c it's not like you never walk him. How long do you think it'll take them to realize Amanda's pregnant?

BTW, you're definitely not country folk. I was actually just having a conversation with someone originally from Boston on how Raleigh/Durham is a "country" city rather than an urban city. It has some aspects of an urban city with suburbs but it's just still too country/southern to claim it.

Garry said...

Good guess. The drop down to one car is the reason the neighbor stated "so your woman left you." And it was a statement not a question. I had no idea what she was talking about so she mentioned that we only had one car.

The dog comment came from a neighbor who found a dog that had been hit by a car in front of her house. She asked around and someone said it belonged to the young couple in the church. It was a small, white fluffy dog - Piper's doppelganger. I felt bad for the woman having to work up the courage to give me the bad news.

I think people will begin to suspect a baby is in the making once our mailbox starts filling up with all of the junk mail Babies R Us is sure to send us.

stef b. said...

How exciting it will be for a little town to have a home birth. It is funny how silly little towns can be. Gossip seems to have to be the center of a small town. The two young city folk seem the best canidates.