Autumn spends a lot of time in really small towns. I mean, some of that is just that’s what she seems to like, but you’d think she’d spend more time in big cities that have big craft festivals, wouldn’t you? I mean, she’s trying to make enough of a living to pay for the occasional inn or motel or Bed N’ Breakfast room, and those aren’t cheap.I like small towns.
I grew up between three small towns, out in the middle of farmland (literally: My parents built their house on land my grandfather and his father before him had farmed, on a road my grandfather literally built as a high school summer job). I grew up with a small-town library where the librarian knew me and I knew her, in the sort of place where a party really is a bonfire in someone’s backyard because, really, where else are you going to go? My parents grew up in small towns. Pretty sure at least two of my grandparents did, too. We’re small town people, rural people.
I have to admit, some stereotypes of small-town living (Everyone knows everyone, for instance) I never really understood. I mean, I knew my neighbors, but in farmland, that isn’t all that many people. And small towns these days often have housing tracts tacked onto the sides of them, apartment complexes, trailer parks. So they’re not that image of small-town living that seems to permeate the media (And, to look at another setting for a moment, Regine’s vision of a small town with The Village outside of Addergoole) The houses go back layer after layer from Main Street. You go over the canal (in many cases) or the railroad tracks and you’re almost in another neighborhood. But you’ll still run into people you know at the grocery store, at the Fireman’s Carnival (I haven’t written a story about anyone at a carnival yet, have I?), at the Canal Days Craft Festival (Where Autumn really ought to have a booth…)