Tuesday, January 29, 2019

The March Of Time

I was thinking the other day about changes in our lives. I grew up in a small town in Texas--population 2578 (and don't ask me why that's stuck in my mind) when I left. I went for my pre-med to a college that became a university while I was in attendance. It was in a larger town, but not huge. Not like Dallas, where I went to  see about financial help for my medical school attendance. While I was looking for my destination, I inadvertently turned and went the wrong way on a one-way street. I was able to get by without a ticket because the policeman believed me when I told him I'd never encountered one before--because I hadn't. Welcome to the big city.

When we moved from a suburban town, population 35,000, to a different suburban area, population about three times as large, it took some adjustment. But after we settled in, we discovered that almost anything we wanted to visit--restaurants, church, groceries, other stores--could be reached in about 15 minutes. It was about twice as long as we were used to, and three times as long as what I grew up with, but it was okay.

Then the population boom hit, and our particular suburb jumped to about 175,000 people over a 10 year period. Although it still only takes 15 minutes to get to most of the places that are important to us, we've been known to almost double that if we decide to go to a new restaurant or store...or if the traffic is too heavy.

People are moving north from our suburb to the next one and the one past that. They're looking for the simple life, the unencumbered existence, in a small town. But my prediction is that, as time marches on, they'll find the population increasing in their area. And so it goes.

The answer? I don't have one. But what we've done is accept that population shifts and growth spurts are going to happen. How about you? Have you noticed this going on in your neck of the woods? And how have you handled it? I'd love to know.


Priscilla said...

Yes, we've noticed. In particular, my husband, who likes dark skies, worries that the increased population will make night time star gazing more difficult. We may eventually retire to a population 2578 town with very little lighting.

Yesterday I thought up a plot that takes place in a town that size, a railroad bust town. I'm thinking it could be my NaNoWriMo book this year!

Richard Mabry said...

Priscilla, have a go at it. BTW, the population of that town has almost tripled since I left--almost. Yes, the march of civilization reaches to every corner of our state.