How Do You Know When You’re in a Small Town?

20 05 2011

After a very rainy but beautiful two days in Petrified Forest National Park, Yair and I stopped by the Holbrook Safeway to load up on groceries.  As soon as we were back in the RV, I realized that we forgot to get milk.  Yair sent me back inside for the last-minute grocery run as he whipped up some delicious edamame.  Moments later, I had my first ever real small town experience.

There was a beautiful woman in her late 20s / early 30s standing in the check-out line right next to me.  She reminded me of a famous actress, but I couldn’t figure out who.  Commence conversation:

Ayo:  You remind me of a famous actress, but I can’t figure out who.  Do you get that a lot?

Woman:  <Laughter>  No, not really.  But it’s nice of you to say so.

A man pipes up:  She’s just going incognito as herself.  Maybe she is the famous actress.

Woman:  <More laughter>  At a supermarket in Holbrook?  That would be really incognito.  

She turns back toward me.

Woman:  But you’re not from around here.  Where are you from?

Ayo:  Do I have an accent?  How can you tell?

Woman:  I grew up in Holbrook.  Everyone knows everyone.

Ayo:  It’s really that small a town?

Woman:  See that man in front of you?  He owns the bowling alley and pizza store in town.

The man turns around and waves.

Woman:  See the woman in front of him?  I went to school with her son.

The woman at the front of the checkout line smiles.

Woman:  See the man in the next line over?  He teaches at the church.

We continued our conversation for a few minutes.  She inquired about our travels and wished us luck.

Which brings me to the subject of this post…  How do you know when you’re in a small town?  When you can name every person in the check-out line with zero degrees of separation!  🙂

posted by ayo




5 responses

21 05 2011
Stumpy and Cyndi

Holbrook’s a great little town!

We’re stuck in dirtville, a little town east of Kingman, doin’ nuthin but dreaming and working to get out of here!

Cyndi & Stumpy @ RVly Ever After

21 05 2011
Carol Andrews

Before I moved to my husband’s home town, I went to the bank there and asked to cash a check. The teller looked at it then said, “If that is from the Andrews I know, yes I will cash it.” That’s a small town.

23 05 2011

The upside of a small town is the security of knowing everybody. The downside of a small town is everybody knows everybody!! Found your blog by accident and will live through your adventures until I hit the road myself! Thanks for sharing.

25 05 2011

Loved this!

3 06 2011

Glad you guys enjoyed this one, and I imagine we’ll be adventuring through a lot more small towns in the coming year. My impression: fun to visit, fun to live in for a year or two, but I’m not sure I could hack the small town-ness for life! 🙂

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