Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Amy's Extraordinary Alabama: The Quirks of a Small Town

By Amy

My ramblings today probably isn't about something extraordinary about Alabama. Just quirky, but sometimes I think it's the quirks that make us, our towns, our lives extraordinary.

I grew up in what most people from the south would call "out in the middle of nowhere". No traffic lights, we weren't even considered a town. Just a rural community. I mean the cows in the pasture across from my house woke me up each morning so it was rural.

But to be fair, there were places even farther "out in the middle of nowhere" than we were. The nearest town was 7 miles away. The nearest small city 12 miles away. And let's not even discuss how far away the mall that could barely be considered a mall was.

When I married my DH we moved back to his hometown. We've lived here almost 13 years now. And we do love it. Moving from the nearest grocery store being 8 miles away to being 2 miles away is something I am very thankful for. Until I realize they don't carry pomegranate molasses, but that's another story. Where was I? Oh yes.

Technically, we're a city with a population of about 15,000, but we do have a very small town feeling to our fair city.

And sometimes that small town atmosphere comes with lots of quirks and idiosyncrasies.

For example: Our post office closes at noon on Wednesdays. Do you know how many Wednesdays I've pulled into the post office, hopped out of my vehicle, opened the door to the post office to realize that they are closed? With the P.O. boxes being available around the clock there are almost always cars in the parking lot during the day so it can be deceiving. You would think after all these years I would remember this little tidbit of info. I can understand it closing early on Saturday. Who would want to work all day on Saturday? But on Wednesdays? It's not like the mail carriers are delivering any earlier. They still deliver my mail after 4 p.m. on Wednesdays just like the other 5 days mail is delivered.

As a little child I do remember the banks in the nearest towns closing at noon on Wednesdays. I'm not sure what this stemmed from. Maybe it was a southern quirk. But it's been many, many years since I've encountered a bank that closes at noon on Wednesdays.

So you can imagine why it still baffles me that our post office would close so early on just this one weekday.

So do you live in a small town or were you raised in a small town in Alabama? If so, what are or were some of the quirks or oddities of your small town life?


Sabrina Kay said...

When I was growing up the only thing we had to do for fun was cruise the square on weekends. We would fill the square so full of cars that it might take you an hour to circle. I made some many friends and have so many WONDERFUL memories I wouldn't trade it for any mall or movie theatre

Mary said...

I'm a city girl who now lives & works in small town Alabama. The banks don't close at noon on Wed, but several businesses do. I do LOVE small town America.

Lianne said...

Our banks close on Wednesday and 1/2 a day on Saturday. Our post office closes at noon on Wednesday and Saturday. A lot of our small-town mom and pop businesses are closed on Wednesday, too. Most of our restaurants are closed on Sundays.

Anonymous said...

i'm so happy to know we're not the only quirky small town. :) our banks do close at noon on Saturdays.

And Sabbie Bee I totally remember cruising around areas of the town on weekends when I was a teenager.

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