Thursday, July 28, 2016

Essay: Why I like living in a small town

7B English
Mrs. Galligan

I love small town life. I know it’s not for everybody, but I think it’s the best thing ever and I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. Being only twelve, I haven’t traveled much, and the biggest city I’ve been to is Des Moines, which was plenty big for me, but everything I need and want is right here in my hometown.

I live in a nice house on Brigid Street with my parents and five-year old brother Sean. My father works at the Ace Hardware store and my mother teaches religion at the school. A lot of my friends live outside of town on farms. Their families work really hard every year to raise the crops and make sure everyone has enough food for the long winter. Of course we know that hard work alone isn’t enough to guarantee a bountiful harvest, but without farmers, all the food god grants us would just rot in the fields.

Every summer my two cousins from Chicago come to visit for a week. Jessica, the cousin close to my age, never leaves the house while she’s here. Every year I try to get her to go swimming or mess around downtown, but she thinks the people who live here are creepy. Our town is kind of “off the grid” as my dad would say, but that doesn’t automatically make us creepy.

My favorite thing about living in a small town is the holidays. There’s the Christmas concert at the school, the Easter parade down Main Street, fireworks on the fourth of July, and the Harvest Festival in October. It’s so cool to me that the whole town participates in all of these events, like one big family. That doesn’t happen in your big city!

The Harvest Festival is coming up in two weeks. I was very honored to be chosen this year’s queen of the festival and I’ll be attending events all week long, like the corn eating contest, barbeque and dance and the lamb draining. The final day of the festival is a big deal, of course, and as queen, I’ll be part of the evening’s program. I’m looking forward to it, although all of my friends will be there watching me so it will be kind of scary, too.

Some people, like my dumb Chicago cousins, don’t understand what it means to give to your community to help it prosper. They think our ways are old fashioned and strange, but I don’t care. When I stand on top of the pyre in three weeks chanting the sacred verse, the flames purifying my earthly flesh, I’ll know that I’ve given all I can to the people I love most in this world, and they will be grateful for my sacrifice.

Now I hope you understand why I love small town life.

Kelly O’Malley

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