The greater metropolitan population of my hometown is about 200,000.
There are over 90 bars, all of which serve the same house wine, domestic tap beer and have the same smoky dingy interior. There is one bookstore: Barnes and Noble- also the only free wifi location in town.
The male-female ratio is about 76:100. Median income is 18,000 and 25% of the population lives in poverty.
The political tone is strongly republican and no one that I've talked to cares that the best gym at the local Y is men only. After all, I'm such a feminist.
The average driver's age is 59.
There is a local racetrack and 2 movie theaters. There are no art galleries.
A nurse on U8, one of the few who was interested in more than getting married and having babies, was after me for weeks to get together. Finally, we had a common day off and made plans.
I was thrilled to finally share conversation. She didn't show up. She sent me a text message the next morning telling me how sorry she was but a friend showed up in town unexpectedly.
Now, a week later, she acts as though we are best buddies, girl-flirting with me at work and constantly playing with my hair. I ignore it. My resentment towards her is minor. Rather I resent that this stifling, backwaters town has so lowered my standards for friendship. I miss my wonderful, interesting, reliable Seattlite friends.
She asked me if I was going to be sad on my last day next week and I laughed at her.
I hate this town and, now that my family is mostly gone, can hardly wait til I'm gone.