This is NOT My Hometown

I always find inspiration for these journal/blog things when I’m listening to Pandora. Whilst in West Plains, my roommates plagued me with country music. That was what they love, both of them. I grew up on country music (courtesy of mom) and 80s rock, (when dad could sneak it in) but somewhere along the line (Pretty sure it was middle school that did it) I developed my own preferences. These preferences were not country music. I hated that twangy crap. Then I started working in Branson. You know what kind of stations Branson has? Country. During work, I heard country or southern gospel. Or a mixture of both. Usually a mixture of both. (I have one of the CDs memorized.) I came to West Plains barely tolerating country music, and now I listen to it. Sometimes. It’s peppered my Pandora, along with musical numbers, Christian music, rap music, and alternative stuff. Mostly alternative stuff.

Anyway. I got sidetracked. So I was listening to “Give Me Back My Hometown” by Eric Church (I know that because I just looked it up.) and it made me kinda happy because I get to go to my hometown in a few days. And it made me think. Where I come from, leaving is a big deal. EVERYONE wants to, few do. It’s like an instant blight when someone doesn’t want to leave or comes and stays awhile. “Like, did you hear about Becky? She went to this far away college and now she’s back. She only did a semester there, and now she’s at the local community college.” “What a shame. Poor Becky, she will never get out now.” And I don’t really get that. It’s okay to miss your home for goodness sakes! I get so nostalgic for home sometimes! Besides, I kind of love it. It’s soooo close to Springfield which I miss soooooooo much. Mostly I miss the foooodddd. Sweet goodness, they have so many delicious things West Plains just doesn’t have….yet. (Hopefully.)

ANYWAY! Food is the only thing that can get me off topic. Yummm. It’s okay to miss home, dangit. It’s okay to want to stay in your hometown! Leaving is perfectly fine too, of course, but seriously, when did it become this terrible blight to stay where you grew up? Since I am a planner to my core, I’ve given thought to where I want to live. Indiana is my first choice. Weird, I know, I know. But you can’t help what state you fall in love with. But, there’s one big problem: I don’t know anyone in Indiana. If/when I decide to unleash offspring into this world, I want them to see their grandparents. Who all live in Missouri. So, the conclusion is to stay in Missouri. And you know what? I loved growing up in my hometown for the most part. It was close enough to towns, I could roam free and no one cared if my brother and I were screaming because there was no one around. Okay, mom cared. But only because she was petrified one of us was dying. It was a great time. Why wouldn’t I want to give my hypothetical offspring the same wonderful childhood I had?

Also, for all of you people who think it is the worst thing in the world to go to your community college right after high school, think about who will have thousands of dollars in debt, and who won’t have nearly as much. Community college is the freakin’ bomb, people. Two years free with A+, usually (Usually!) you live with your parents, (for free) they provide your food, (for free) the college isn’t that far, and you may have a job. That means most of your paycheck goes to savings for the two years of unpaid college afterwards. This seems brilliant, just saying.

In conclusion, HOLD YOUR HEAD UP HIGH BECAUSE THERE IS NO SHAME IN CHOOSING LIVING IN YOUR HOMETOWN OR GOING TO COMMUNITY COLLEGE! You are doing what is best for you. Take pride in your fiscally responsible decisions. I kind of did in-between. I’m using my A+ but at a college where I do pay for room and board, etc. BUT! I used my scholarships to cover it. Whoot whoot! Those things are beautiful lifesavers. Another time, my ranting has gone on long enough today.

At a two-year university and loving it,

Tori

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