Saturday, October 11, 2008

Smalltown boy

My favorite time of year....fall.

Yesterday was just about the perfect day. 80 degrees, clear blue sky, and a slight breeze to gently nudge you further down whichever path you happened to be traveling.

I spent three hours walking around my town with a camera, taking pictures of many of the historic buildings and landmarks, as well as the variety of vibrant fall colors that have popped out all around.

Growing up here as a kid, I was never interested in visiting historic places, checking out the unique architecture of older homes, or taking pictures of the beautiful falling leaves.

Kids only like visiting landmarks when it means a day away from school. Wrap around porches and crown moulding in homes just meant difficult places to dust and a bigger outside area to sweep.

The lovely fall colors of the leaves meant only one thing....something you had to constantly rake, bag up and either throw away or burn before any TV could be watched.

Now that I'm older, things are very different.

I've come to find my little town, with its one main street, charming and quaint. It's not too far away from seeming like a movie set on a studio backlot.

Those older homes that I used to rush by each day on the way to school are now beautiful, intricately detailed and full of character and personality (thanks to my obsession with HGTV and latent appreciation for detail and design style).

Those sporting fields, once a source of dread and personal embarrassment, are now just distant memories, replaced by my newfound appreciation for the excitement and hope that it gives for the many kids and adults, of all races, I now see in the area.

This weekend happened to be Homecoming for the High School and the "parade" (the band and several cars with kids) passed right by the front porch of my parent's house on main street.

The "there's nothing to do here in this boring town" feeling you have as a kid, is replaced by the "'s so nice and quiet here and a walk to the park would be lovely" feeling you appreciate as an adult.

And even the small-mindedness and prejudice that can seep into some of the minds and hearts of those that grow up here and, often, never leave, shows signs of forward thinking and progress.

As Martha Stewart would say...."It's a good thing".

Small or large, Democrat or Republican, Varsity or benchwarmer, Diary Queen or Coldstone Creamery....a town is always judged by the people who live there. What our city lacks in size, it makes up for in heart and kindness in the people who actually smile and make eye contact with you wherever you go.

Tipp City, Ohio may not be the largest spot on the map or the first stop on any travel plan, but if you're fortunate enough to happen by...

You may find yourself tempted to stay.

I saw this handpainted sign in the window of a restaurant that was open for its final day (they obviously had posted a daily countown at some point) and it pretty much summed up the time left for me visiting my family.

I fly out tomorrow and head back to my life in LA, where "traffic" means more than three cars on the road, where "crime" means more than "boy knocks over yard gnome", and where "friendliness" is usually indicated by which arrangement of fingers are raised when you ask someone to take their trash cans away from the front of your driveway.

There's no place like home....


Sissy said...

Absolutely spectacular! What a beautiful tribute to your home and the capriciuousness of memory.

Vampire Hours said...

Thank you. Going home always makes one reflective and a bit emotional. But, I had a great time during my visit and that's what counts.

Sissy said...

I think I want to open my muffin shop/jewelry emporium/Reiki clinic in Tipp City! You game?

Kate Johnsen said...

Hey Ken,
Nice tribute to Tipp City. Great pictures too. It's really not such a bad place to be! Give me a call next time you're in town.

Vampire Hours said...

Thanks Katy. Glad you liked it and nice to see you visiting the site. I'll definitely let you know next time I'm in town. This past visit went far too quickly!

Vampire Hours said...

Yes Maggie....Tipp could definitely use a shop with all of those fine shopping/eating and healing options. The Coldwater Cafe building is now available...I think we may have found the perfect space.