I grew up in a small(ish) town. Most of the ladies in my bridal party were girls I knew in diapers, or during my prepubescent awkwardness, or in jail (we don’t talk about that). Where we live is considered rural, but by no means are we pumping our own water out of wells (most of us, anyway). However, a few years ago the hubs and I moved to an even more agrarian (<– big word, thanks thesaurus.com) town. And with small-town living comes pros and cons. Cons like, bumping into your neighbor, accountant, or babysitter’s aunt’s nephew’s girlfriend on your way to the bank/grocery store/church and having an hour-long conversation about every-single-person you both know. Or being a half-hour drive from the mall. Which doesn’t sound too long, but, dude, I live in New Jersey. At any given point, there is a diner or mall within three feet of you.
However, there are wonderful things about small-town living. Things that, living in a bigger city such as Boston (which I did for a few years) or New York City (in which a few friends reside), may get overlooked. You get to know people. You care about them. They are there for you, and you for them. They drive by your house, and call you if they see anything weird. They run extension cords from their homes to yours if you don’t have power, and don’t say a word about their electric bill. They get up on your roof before a big storm and clean out your gutters, if they see you’re not home. They hold food and clothing drives to help others in need. There is seriously a tricky-tray every night to raise money for a local family who has come across hard times. The fire department swings by to pump out your basement after a big storm, because they know your basement floods, not because you called them. Like I said, there is a whole-lot of wonderful living in a small-town.
We were one of the fortunate ones, only losing power for three days. I have friends and family that still don’t have power, or can’t even get back to their homes to see what damages have been done. So please, please, please, donate your time, extra pennies, old clothes, or whatever you can to help those in need. Here is a site to see what the American Red Cross is doing, or text to donate $10 (Text REDCROSS to 90999 to donate to Disaster Relief efforts). Organize a group of friends to hold a clothing drive. Make a neighbor soup.
Come on Jersey, we got this.