I come from a small, farm town in Northeast Ohio called Lagrange. "Grange" in French literally means "barn" which should give you a good idea of what the priority in my town is. The population as of 2017 is 2,153. Lagrange is actually so small that it's considered a village, but to me, it's my town. The name for the town was actually derived from Château de la Grange-Bléneau, the French home of Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette, who was an officer in the American Revolutionary War.
It is your typical farm town.
We have two gas stations, two fast food restaurants, a couple churches, one school district, two pizza shops, a post office, one grocery store, a library, a dentist, a fire station, a police station, a barber shop, a couple salons, and a nursing home. There are a few random businesses here and there, but for the most part, Lagrange does not have much going on. I somewhat like it better that way because we are not suffocated. There is so much space in Lagrange, mainly because of the fields and the few community parks that we have. Lagrange has seen many events throughout its time since it was established in 1827. There has been tragedies and celebrations since its founding. There is a village parade every July for the Lagrange Lions Festival, which is basically a mini county fair. Things like that are what make it unique.
The best thing about living in a small town is the fact that everyone knows everyone.
On the other hand, the worst thing about living in a small town is that fact the everyone knows everyone. There is never any business that is just your business. Something could happen to you or your family and regardless of the news, everyone in town will know the next day. The local "Mama Kats" Facebook page will be flooding with posts about it. The kids in school will all be spreading it around and making rumors about you. Although there are many things that have been spread around that was not necessarily true, the fact that word travels fast is sometimes a good thing. There could be something that would be an immediate danger to the members of the community and it would be spread around quickly to prepare us for the worst. There have been many tragedies in our town, in the last couple of years especially, which really tests the "closeness" of our small town.
Through all of the bad, our community is very close. Even though everyone knows your business, there is never a time where you feel like you have no one to turn to. There will always be someone willing to take you in, let you use the bathroom, feed you, or give you a place to sleep. I could literally ask the next person I saw for a ride and chances are that I know them already, but they would give a ride with no hesitation. The community is always giving back as well. There is always a food drive or a clothing drive for the families in our community that need it more than others.
There are many reasons why I am such a homebody, and part of it is because I have a great town that I come home to. There is never a time where everything there is necessarily "good", but it sure as hell is not all bad. It's so relieving to be back in a place that I call home and that I'm so familiar with. I know (almost) everything about Lagrange, the streets, the best places to eat, and it's so comforting. The best part? Being so close with your teachers in high school that you call them by their first name. Behind their back, of course!! (Lagrange people you know what I'm talking about).
If you're from a small town, hopefully, this will change your view on that town you come from where everyone knows everything. There are more good things than bad about coming from a town like this.