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Small Towns

September 27, 2010

Cambria, California

During the last week of summer, my family and I took a trip to the small town of Cambria to enjoy the last few days of our family unit as a “whole.” We road tripped it on up to Cambria, a beach town in northern California to just relax, talk, and, of course, geocache.

But the point of this blog is not to discuss geocaching (although I promise there will me more blogs on that in the future), nor is it to discuss the importance of family and the family unit (that, I have discussed in past blogs).

I want to talk about small towns. I ain’t talking suburbs, and I ain’t talkin’ neighborhoods. I’m talking about the little gem towns you’d never discover if you didn’t take that random exit on the freeway because you downed that super-sized Diet Coke five miles back and the little girl’s room is finally calling to you.

It’s such a strange feeling to be in places like that — places like Cambria. There is a sense of closeness in the community you don’t feel when you’re living in a bigger city. In the city, you look at the people across the street from you and think, “What are they looking at?” But in Cambria, there is a sense of solidarity among the residents. It’s a “this person must share similar values as me if he/she has chosen to live in such a remote area. I’d love to get to know him/her better.”

And it really makes you wonder about your home and your community and the life you lead. It made me wonder, at least.

If I’m working at a newspaper in five years time (fingers crossed!), do I want to be working for a BIG publication and live in a dirty, fast-paced city where I have to run down the sidewalks and into the newsroom for fear of getting mugged? Or do I want to work at a vibrant local paper where I can wake up half an hour before work as there is no need to worry about morning traffic? Sure, I’ll be covering stories about puppy fashion shows instead of Washington, D.C., but I’ll enjoy the laid-back, small town lifestyle more, won’t I?

Well, see, I don’t know about that …

Yes small towns are quaint, and they’re loving and they’re unusual — but then again, they’re SMALL TOWNS! They’re small! (duh!)

I feel as though, inevitably, after the joy and feeling of brotherhood among my neighbors has worn off, I’ll be faced with the undeniable fact that I’m really going nowhere. There’s a sense in Cambria that those who live there are content to only just live there. They love their home, their dog and their family and that’s that. They don’t ever want to leave the beach paradise that is their backyard. They don’t want to shop at any other grocery store than the family owned Miller’s Fine Foods down the street. (They know the Millers. Their daughter is a cheerleader at Cambria High. Mrs. Miller makes a badass apple pie. Mr. Miller doesn’t ever mow his lawn. That is annoying.)

But, then again, I don’t have to make up my mind yet, right? I get to live in college for a bit longer. Then I’ll have to pick up my decision-making pace.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. September 28, 2010 10:36 am

    Small town newspapers can be very entertaining. Steve Rashid used to read to us from the police blotter of the Ripon, Wisconsin newspaper. There would be items like “a woman returned to her car after shopping yesterday, to find her car door had been tampered with.”

    You gotta love it when THAT’S the level of crime.

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