here in my hometown. rolla, MO. we arrived today after driving 1/2 way and staying in Oklahoma city last night. the kids all did fabulously and it was a fairly uneventful ride. i only threatened to leave them w/ truck drivers a couple times and felt mildly guilty afterwards since i think perhaps they were somewhat frightened at the suggestion. the trip will be short and packed w/ wedding duties. brooklyn as flower girl and hudson as ring bearer (or the ring man as he so lovingly refers to it)
the rehearsal dinner was tonight and the wedding is outdoors overlooking the spectacular missouri hillside. funny how growing up here i never appreciated the full beauty that surrounded me. as we drove down Hwy 63 tonight on our way back to the hotel i couldn't help noticing nature's beauty along the way. i thought about all the hundreds of times i'd traveled that Hwy..first as a young teen riding to kansas city with my grandmother to spend weeks with my aunt & uncle or shopping in jefferson city for prom dresses or to and from school sporting events....and then of course later as a young college student traveling to and from mizzou...back and forth, back and forth. never one time did i ever look out my window and take it all in. i was always too busy wondering when i was going to reach my destination. kinda sad.
as a midwestern girl it even amazes me at how far removed i feel from it all. i'm not sure if it's because i didn't grow up my entire life here (spending the majority of my elementary and middle school years in michigan) a few years of middle school, jr. high, highschool and then college were spent here...however, when i drive down the old gravel roads or even the old paved country roads i see farms and tractors and old farmhouses i realize how very little i actually know about that lifestyle. i never spent time in the country doing....country type things??? and it's odd to me since that is so much what life is about in the midwest. isn't it all about covered wagons and frontier land???? for me it wasn't. and as soon as i could get the heck out of here i did. not that i don't appreciate this more now....but when i went to columbia for college it was like i maybe started feeling more at home....you know ...w/ coffee shops and thrift stores and live music at intimate venues. and that's still what i love. so when i come home....it sometimes doesn't really feel like home. except i like that i know all the little back roads and short cuts around town. and i like going to walmart and bumping into my 3rd grade teacher...and i like eating my Maid-rite and knowing every time the door opens there's a friendly face that is somehow connected to some else there...even if it's not me. i like driving by my highschool and remembering what it was like there on friday nights during football games...and how when we played lebanon or west plains the parking lot was always so full sometimes you had to park at the church across the street and walk for what seemed like forever. yea, sometimes i like that.
and then it feels a little more like home.