Growing Up In Vermont
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Growing Up In Vermont

Growing up in the middle of nowhere is better than it sounds

Growing Up In Vermont
Charity Buzz

I’m from rural Vermont. I live an hour and a half from a decent mall, two or more hours from any real city, and four hours from the beach. My town has 4,000 people and two stoplights. We have two grocery stores too, a perk since neighboring towns have to travel to us just to shop.

I know it sounds boring, but I promise it wasn’t. Growing up in the middle of no where taught me how to make my own fun.

Starting in kindergarten my parents signed me up for sports, many of which I continued through high school. I tried everything. I started soccer when I was in kindergarten, playing in a town league with other five and six year olds. I started hockey when I was in the fourth grade. I played field hockey at summer camp. I played basketball in my backyard. I went skiing every Thursday afternoon throughout elementary and middle school. I swam on the town swim team for eight summers.

Summers were anything but boring on the swim team. We’d wake up in the before seven to strap on one piece bathing suites and jump in unheated lap lanes. We’d flirt with the few boys on the team even though we looked like aliens in our swim caps. We’d train every day, thinking that Vermont State championships meant everything, because they did. We’d have bagels and ribbons on Fridays, carpools to meets on Saturdays, and much awaited sleep-ins on Sundays. We stayed on the team until we were too old to love the wake-up times, but even then we could be found at the pool as lifeguards, coaches, and older siblings.

We spent a lot of time outside. We learned how to bike, scooter, and skate board at the local park. We played late night tennis until the park’s lights would shut off. We hiked, biked, and ran all around our tiny town, getting to know every road and trail like the back of our hands. We explored the woods on ATVs and bikes, happening upon springs, rivers, and secret hollows. We gardened and got dirty and didn’t care about our clothes. We swam some more, in backyard pools, lakes, and quarries. We swung off ropes in to shallow lakes, only hitting our butts on the bottom a few times. We jumped off of marble cliffs in to quarry waters. We slid down rock slides the were basically waterfalls. We tubed down rivers that were anything but lazy. We sat around blazing bonfires and toasted marshmallows, wearing sweatshirts to fight off the cool summer nights.

In the winters we were outside too. We skied. We would file up the mountain for a few hours of lessons, just waiting for free reign of the mountain. We would meet up with friends and go down a few trails that were way too hard, crashing, popping out of our skis, but still getting up to finish the trail and go down again. We skated. We went from hockey practice to open skate, always willing to race our friends around the ice. We’d gossip while drinking hot chocolate and eating soft pretzels in the rink’s lobby. We went snowmobiling around huge backyards and wooden trails that became highways. We went sledding. Our faces grew red from the cold and our eyelashes grew icicles. We would sled until our feet were numb and could only be thawed by drinking hot chocolate with extra whipped cream.

We had our places– the movie theater, Friendly's, the fancy hotel that didn’t care if we hung out in the lobby. We'd drive aimlessly around town, "loser lapping," making that our "something fun to do" until we found something else. We bonded with our friends, learning everything about them until they became our family.

We spent a lot of time doing what we thought was nothing. Looking back, I realize how much life I was living as I grew up in Vermont. I really think that I couldn't get that anywhere else.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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