Place Where You Live:

Yuma, Colorado

In my town of fewer than 3,000 people, everyone knows everyone. We all know that the sign that reads Grandma Rose’s is no longer Grandma Rose’s Restaurant but instead La Cabaña. We all know that on Mondays, almost all the restaurants are closed. Dairy Queen and Subway are the only fast food restaurants we have.

We all know that the smell of cow manure is normal. We all know when it’s corn harvest and when it’s time to plant wheat. We all know when a baby is born and when someone passes away. We live and breathe the small town culture.

I can walk across the street to my parents’ house, or down the street to my aunt’s house. My grandma and grandpa live close enough to walk, but far enough to justify getting in the car and driving. My uncle lives the farthest away; it takes fifteen minutes to drive to him in another town even smaller than Yuma.

People from the city always tell me that I need to get out of Yuma, that there is more to life outside of this small, rural town. But here, in my town, it’s quiet. The skies are open. The stars speak to me. My daughter points to the moon every day. She notes when the sunrise is red, when the sunsets are pink. She sees each one of her family members weekly, if not daily. What would either of us do in the city?