Where you see a dirt stretch with hills and ditches, I see the field that is carefully rotated between crops each season. I see the places where the combine quit and my father cussed it (because the rain was coming and the crops needed out). I see the spot I got my first deer and the smile my father had each year when we would hunt together.
That driveway is where I learned to ride a bike, got pulled around in a wagon by my siblings, and had lots of crash and burns. Memories of sledding behind the tractor or on a car roof, hayrides in the fall, summer nights in the pool, bonfires behind the shed and more lessons learned than I probably even realize happened within this small place.
I know not everyone is blessed to be proud of home like I am, but it's so much more than my home. It's a place I've cried, loved, sang, laughed, and grown so much. It's where my family has always felt whole.
Family expands over the hills and gravel roads. But not everyone understands this. They see agriculture communities as enemies. As useless. As a place to not care about.
But where an outsider sees an unpaved road, leading to nothing, we see the roads we learned to drive on. Where the four wheelers and rangers were pushed to limits. The paths off the road we took when a week of rain had created a whole new adventure to be had.
Small town, small school, big dreams, and big hearts. We call each other family because in the hottest summers, coldest winters and wettest springs we take care of each other. When tragedy hits one family it hits the whole community.
We watch as the farm beside us struggles to stay above and assist in every possible way. But in today's world, the farmer's aren't on top anymore. They give blood, sweat, and more tears than is known for the land and for their homes. Just for them to eventually be swept from under them.
It may just be in a flyover state, drive-by town, but that piece of dirt in the middle of nowhere is the best place on earth.