Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Everybody Dies Famous in a Small Town

This past weekend, I went to the hometown of former Colorado governor Roy Romer. I'm talking about Holly, Colorado. It's in the southeast corner of the state - about 3 miles from Kansas and about 45 miles from Oklahoma. The drive from Denver takes about three and a half hours and takes you through many small towns. We stop in Limon for dinner, then a pit stop in Eads to catch up with some family friends, then into Holly. On the way out, there may be a pit stop in Eads, but there's the Loaf 'N Jug in Hugo for a pit stop, fill up, and leg stretch. Side note: who knew that you could acquire a gift card for AMC theaters (nearest location over 200 miles away) at the Loaf 'N Jug in Hugo?

I was in Holly for my friend's little sister's graduation from high school. The class was 15 people and was a quick, one-hour ceremony. I had people asking me (since I am from the suburbs of Denver) what my high school graduation was like. They couldn't believe that I had over 700 people in my class, that I had to hand a slip of paper with my name and phonetic spelling on it to a teacher, and I didn't know the two people that sat next to me. Much less could they fathom the thought of a three-hour ceremony.

The ceremony for the 15 really could have been completed in 20 minutes if it were conducted similar to my high school graduation, but the small class allowed for a lot of personalization to the ceremony. Every student was able to hand a rose out to individuals in their lives that had made an impact (sobbing ensues), a video of the students through the years - from babies to their senior picture - and even as a whole class from kindergarten. The recognition of their achievements on an individual basis made this ceremony more memorable for me because I felt like I got to know all 15 students.

Which brings me to the title of this entry "Everybody Dies Famous in a Small Town". Miranda Lambert has a song of the same title that really is the epitome of small town life. Everyone in the town is like family, if not family by birth or marriage. I know more about half the town because there is always someone talking about friends and family and since my friend Kalyn lives in the city now, of course, she needs to be caught up. I realized all of this because I, too, not only asked about people, but people mentioned to me things that had been going on in my life since my last trip for Holly Fair (a weekend in September with horse races - read: tailgating - a town dinner prepared by the senior class, a street dance, parade, livestock auction, and parties) and realized that the grapevine was in full effect.

There is a certain charm to small town life. It has it's own pace of life. I don't know if I could live the life, but weekends at a time, it's a great life. And who wouldn't want to be famous, if just for a weekend?

1 comment:

  1. The best thing about small towns is that if you have no idea what you're doing, chances are other people do.

    My graduating class had over 500. I didn't go because there were so many people and I didn't care for most of them. Plus the disabled kid that was before me died the day before. Just no interest in going.