Monday, June 15, 2009


I have spent the last several weeks at home in rural Nebraska. And while I may have said this before, I think it's worth repeating. The more time I spend living elsewhere, the more I appreciate the life that Nebraska offers. There are so many small things that I miss when I'm away that I would have never expected to miss.

I miss the way the air feels against my skin and smells so sweet and fresh after a thunderstorm. I miss the way I can hear the cars roaring along Interstate 80 from my backyard even though I'm nearly 2 miles away. I miss the country music on every radio station, even though I absolutely hate most country songs. I miss the long open highway that my mom and I drive along to get to the Harlan County Reservoir. I miss the local camaraderie that exists in hometown bars. I miss the way people try to look out for each other even when they don't succeed. I miss the way it feels to sit in an old beat-up diesel pickup truck with my hand out the window, wind blowing swiftly through my fingers, next to someone who just likes to put his arm around me.

But I think what I really miss is the innocence I had before I knew that this life wasn't for me, when I could accept all of these things as all there was to the world. It's been a long time since I felt that way, but I can't help wishing to go back to it sometimes. It was a simple life, with straightforward problems and solutions, or at least it seemed that way.

If only I didn't have to be so complicated.

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