What is a hometown? Is it the town you where born in? Is it the town you grew up in? Or, is it the town that you currently live in? Those are a few questions that I myself have been pondering for some time now.
And, with the publications of articles like “38 things you learned if you grew up in the South” by WhiskeyRiff.com and other similar articles, it begins to grow on a person of what they would determine as their hometown if they moved around as a child.
Personally, I believe that the town that you feel like you grew and prospered the most as a person would be your hometown. I don’t think that just because you spent the first twelve years in one town makes it your hometown.
Did you physically grow there? Yes. Did you collect most of your years there? Yes. But does that mean that you learned what you know about life in that one little town? Not necessarily. And if it doesn't feel like home when you go back, then it probably isn't your hometown.
(I really hope that y’all kind of get the gist of what I’m trying to say.)
For example, I spent the vast majority of my life in Massachusetts but then there was a time in my life where I was down South. I went to High School down South and even earned my diploma down there. I feel like if it hadn’t been for that move and transition in lifestyles, I wouldn’t be part of the person that I am today. I’m not saying that I learned everything that I needed to possibly learn down there or that I'm as wise as someone much older than I. But what I am trying to say is that where you realized that you are the person that you are is where you grew up. For many of you, I really hope that your hometown is the town you were born in. But for those that didn’t have that luxury, do you know what I mean?
According to the Oxford Dictionary a hometown is "the town where one was born or grew up, or the town of one's present fixed residence." With this being said, does that mean that a person can count a town that they only lived in for four or five years as their hometown if they did all of their growing there? If you feel like that's what the Oxford Dictionary was trying to convey with the definition, then go for it!
I want you to feel comfortable sharing those articles about growing up in the south if that’s where you feel like home is. Or heck, even just to say that you’re from the south and proud of it. I know for me, even though here I am going to Elms and living in Massachusetts again, I consider the south to be my home.