Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Country Boy In The Big City

This post appeared quite a while ago, but I thought it was worth bringing out of mothballs. The top picture is of the Waggoner mansion outside my home town.

The other day, I saw a commercial that had a city limit sign showing a population that was almost exactly the same as that of that town when I left there: 2578. And that started me thinking.

When I finished high school (BTW, we only had one of them, plus  one other for the lower grades) and left to enroll in college for my pre-med classes, I jumped to a city that was ten times as large. That wasn't too big an increase in size for a small-town boy, and I adapted. Then I went to Dallas for medical school, and the jump in the population of the city in which I lived represented a logarithmic increase from what I'd become accustomed to. But, again, I adapted.

Over the years, I've been fortunate enough to visit (either as a visiting professor or via a leisure trip) places like New York City, Chicago, Seattle, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas, and lots of other US cities. I've travelled and delivered medical talks in Canada, Mexico, and Central America. I've even been in places like Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand, Germany, Great Britain, Denmark, The Netherlands, and several others. Quite a step up for a small town boy.

I guess it's possible to adapt to one's environment, no matter how large or small the city in which you live may be. But sometimes I wish I were back in that small town in North Texas where I knew everyone, could find my way around blindfolded, and we never locked our door. Then again, those days may be gone forever, even if I tried to go back. As Thomas Wolfe said, "You can't go home again." And, if you do, you'll find it's changed...and so have you.

Do you sometimes find yourself wishing you could go back home? If you did, would things be the same? I'd like to know.

Click to tweet this question. 


Jackie Smith said...

Lived in same county (in GA) until we retired and decided to move closer to dh family. It is in the country, and I go back to my home county as often as I can to meet friends for lunch!

Patricia Bradley said...

Sometimes I'd like to go back to the simpler time of my childhood. Of riding my bike all over East Memphis and not being afraid. I live in a small town now and it's a lot like the part of Memphis I grew up in, so in a way, I have gone back home. :-)

But I wouldn't advise leaving your door unlocked, Richard. :-)

Richard Mabry said...

Jackie and Patricia, Those were the days, weren't they? As the poet puts it, "The world is too much with us late and soon." But time marches on, as do we.
Thanks for your comments.