I’m so sick of living where I do.
Right now, I live in the high desert, but I was born in the deep south. And right now, I’m missing it something fierce (although that could be in part due to the fact I’ve been listening to country music for two days).
I miss the sheets of rain. I miss muggy summer nights (we could describe them as sultry, because they were, but that seems to be over-romanticizing it just a bit). I miss lightning bugs and lush forests and the smell of magnolias. I miss the wilderness. I miss the accents, because out here, the only ones who have an accent is me (and only if I’m drunk or really pissed off–most of the time, I sound exactly like everyone else) and my kids’ pediatrician.
There are things about the high desert that are great: the four seasons, the fact that I know just about everyone in this town, despite its size. The town’s grown pretty big over the last (almost) three decades I’ve been here, but those of us who went to elementary, middle and high school, not the mention college, out here… well, we’re all related to one another. In a way, it’s nice to know just about everyone: it’s a rare day I can go anywhere and not know someone.
But it’s boring, too. I never got out, except during college when I got a scholarship to go to Europe for nine months. Which, incidentally, was the most fun, the most crazy, thing I’ve ever done in my life. And a part of it was that I didn’t know anyone, and I could do whatever I wanted (within reason, because I am, and always was, a very reasonable girl), without having to live up to the expectations that everyone else had for me. Because no one knew me there, I could just be whoever I wanted to be.
Here, if I’d done a third of the stuff I did in Europe, my father would have heard about it and had my hide. Hell, he heard about the time I got into a snowball fight outside of a bar, fell down and slid under a car parked on Virginia Street. Ironically, I hadn’t been drinking. But I hadn’t even been home for more than a few hours when Dad called and said he didn’t necessarily approve of my actions.
It was a stinking snowball fight. Not even a drunk snowball fight, just a snowball fight. Just because I fell down doesn’t mean anything: I’m clumsy on my best day, and it was slippery.
I wonder what he would do if he knew about the stuff I did in Europe… Maybe one day I’ll tell him. Ha! Only if I wanted him to have a heart attack. No matter that it was 15 years ago…
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not bad here. I have a job I love, and I do like the four seasons, and the mountains are nice. So are the few lakes we have around here.
But, Lord, I want out. Twenty more years, and then I can retire and move. Maybe I’ll actually get to pick where we go.
And then I’ll over-romanticize the high desert.