Wednesday, October 26, 2005
you missed the wheatfields?
Why do I feel like someone from the prairie? I have always lived in either a city or a suburb of a city. Never on a farm. Never in a rural area. Shouldn’t I be a “City Knitter”, flaunting my uptown cultural sensibilities?
Oklahoma City, in my mind, falls somewhere between prairie and “actual” city. Sure, it’s a city. It is, in fact, one of the largest cities (in square miles, not population) in our country. There are lots of city things to do. We go to the art museum and the Nobel theater which plays indie and foreign films. There is live theater, live music, good restaurants. City stuff.
But it’s also (and I’m going to sound hopelessly corny here) a down-home kind of place. The people are friendly. We smile at you and chit-chat with you when we’re standing in line together at Hobby Lobby. We sit on the front porch and wave as the neighbors drive by. We have barbecues, not wine-tastings. We are terribly overweight from all the eating that we do. We are not very cool, us down-home folks.
And besides, even if OKC is a city, it is also in the middle of big-ass prairie. Any direction that you leave the city, you will drive through prairie on your way to your destination. If you choose to leave us on a plane, you will fly over prairie for quite a while.
When I moved to Boise (a small city), I missed the bigger-city stuff. Mainly the restaurants. Dang, I love to eat. And there was only one restaurant that I loved in Boise. Whenever I returned on vacations, I spent a lot of time catching up at Ted’s, Tommy’s, and Gopuram. And when I learned that Los Tacos closed a year or so after I moved, I was sure that they went under without me forking over so much money for burritos and nachos.
I also missed the people. There is so much friendliness and hospitality in this area. People love to talk to each other, and it’s like that old Will Rogers line, “I never met a man I didn’t like.” Well, anyone who knows me knows that there are LOTS of people that I don’t like. But it doesn’t mean I’m not courteous. Except when I'm driving.
And I really, really missed the land. Yes, the flat land. There I was, living in the foothills and Boise is a very pretty little city. A river runs through the entire city, creating a little green oasis in the desert. The foothills are beautiful in the winter, covered in snow. The Sawtooth mountains are just a short drive away. But I missed the prairie. The wheatfields and the flat horizon. The great big sky with its dark gray and purple thunderclouds and its mean tornadoes. And can I say it again, just to get it off my chest? I missed…wheatfields.
And so there you have it. Without any other supporting statements, I think that the simple fact that I can miss wheatfields when I am away from them for too long makes me a prairie person. I just happen to live in the city.
P.S. I have good news for you guys. About a year after I moved back, Los Tacos RE-OPENED! Coincidence, I think not.