Small Town, IA (Part 1)

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She didn’t know why she was going. Could she really?  Just up and drive all that way for a concert?  She had already bought her ticket, but Iowa was a bit of drive.  It was also not just that the concert was in Iowa, it was in small town, Iowa.  She tried not to think about it.  She had struggled to come to terms with certain aspects of life.  She just hoped that Small Town, IA would not make her question the strength she had obtained with the acceptance of the these terms.

She decided not to waste the ticket and she was looking forward to the concert.  So hours later she was on her way.  It was a beautiful morning so far.  It was a perfect spring day in May and the sun was already shining.  She knew she was born to do this.  Travel on not so much of  a whim. Sight seeing and exploring what the world had to offer.  She could do this.  She was doing this.

Driving a long she was not sure where she should stop. Should she just drive through?  Let the road guide her? Would there even be anything worth stopping for?  She decided to just follow the road and sing along with the radio.

She made mental notes about hating the I-80. Disappointment set in with the lack of things worth stopping for, but then she saw it.  A brownish-red state park sign.  A sign for Buffalo Rocks.  She was intrigued.

She knew she had made the right decision taking the detour when she saw the buildings that had been weathered by a storm.  The town was historic feeling with old brick buildings, the “hadn’t been fixed in a while” streets, and abandoned houses once burdening the weight of a tornado knocking on their doors. She was fascinated and it felt right. She felt contentment with the afternoon sun glistening off of window panes and local bikers gathering in the town center.

She continued to her destination, smiling to herself.

The rocks were beautiful with a peacefulness that could only be felt in the middle of nowhere.  She walked over long rusted and long forgotten train tracks.  Climbing the dirt path to the top of the hill.  Giggling at the abandoned, rusted out car that had clearly been used as a redneck shooting range.  She felt at home.She felt right with herself.  Just standing at the top of the rocks, green grass shining, and the dirt of the rocks glistening.  Taking in a freshness of air unfamiliar. Moments passed before she realized she needed to be on her way.

Through Amish country she felt peace. Taking in the Iowa fields. If anything the drive would be worth it, but she was excited about what the evening had in store.

Her motel was decent with its yellow walls and flower blankets. She thought it was a decent location.  Though, she’d come to realize that the town was farther away from her destination than what she thought.  Still the drive made up for what the distance lacked…appeal.  She was confident and excited, but then she realized just how small that Small Town, IA really was.

Apprehension sat in as she pulled into the fairgrounds.  The eyes of locals were upon her, but she held her head high and found herself a place to sit.  The fairgrounds were filled, but not to the extent one would think for a concert.  She then realized that to the locals, this was nothing more than a social gathering. Much like Saturday nights and the Wal-mart parking lot.

Though, she was there to see both artist playing, she was not surprised to see the locals light up like fireworks when Confederate Railroad took the stage.  She just took it all in. Enjoying the music. Enjoying the sites.  Making it all worth knowing she had made the right choice.

Night was settling in and the concert was winding down.  She knew that she should be moving on, but she was apprehensive.  Part of her had hoped the CRR boys and Rhett Akins would be signing autographs and the other part could feel eyes upon her.

She looked around. Where were they coming from?  It had been hours, had people not gotten over her being there?  Then she saw him.  That lightly tanned boy in the faded baseball cap.  Big eyes shining through a pair of glasses and a smile a mile wide.  His not quite muscular, but still fit frame, nicely accommodated the shorts and short leave button up he was wearing.  His gaze was fixated on her, but she didn’t know what to think.  She nervously tried to avoid contact, but  just couldn’t.   Then….he headed her way.

copyright 2015 ~SMH~

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