After a trip to town, Vernon and I stopped by Ten Sleep School for a couple of high school basketball games.
Oh, the memories that brings back! My kids played basketball and football and track…
Small towns love their sports!
To be part of the community… I really think you need to attend these games… whether basketball or football or track… otherwise you are missing a large part of the social experience of rural lifestyles.
Sure, half of your neighbors are there, watching kids and grandkids play their hearts out… but you see the insurance agent referee… you see the ambulance crew volunteer their time for standby… you see cowboy hats and muddy boots and work clothes and Pioneer Spirit tshirts… you see donations of blankets and cakes and gift baskets to raffle… you see kids rotating through their job as student council reps manning the concession counter and then playing their games… there’s the teacher/sponsors volunteering to support their high school classes.
Little kids run up and down the hall under supervision of rotating mothers… the rest are watching big brother/sister play for a few minutes until taking her turn with the little ones. Bigger kids are behind the bleachers or outside of the gym doors, running and jumping and sliding in snow or mimicking the sport of choice.
Middle school girls grab babies out of mothers’ arms and wag them around like puppies.
“Wanna ticket? C’mon, buy a ticket!” Doesn’t seem to matter what you’re supporting… you’ll buy a ticket because someone bought a ticket when your kids were in StudentCouncil/FFA/4H/Scouts/FBLA/HonorSociety/SkillsUSA. Doesn’t matter what you’re winning, a half a pig /basketofgoodies /cake /rifle /cookies /leather rifle scabbard (which we won a couple of years ago!) You buy one or “6 for $5!” because it supports our kids and our future.
You watch your teams play hard… Eleven man football with twelve kids. Five girls on the high school basketball team. Boys basketball with eight boys was tonight’s numbers… easy enough for the opponent to rotate in 4 or 5 at a time out of his 15 boys, not so for us! But we won anyway. So many times we don’t… but our kids play with heart! You watch the development through the years… the freshmen that trip over the painted lines have a sweet nothing but net shot as seniors… the scrawny boy lifts weights and blossoms at 16 into a linebacker at the All Star Game. You knew that kid. You babysat him and changed his diaper and remember his Halloween costume that one year… Making the team is not the problem… getting enough kids to MAKE a team is the problem with the high school…
Sure… you say you live in a small town. You enjoy the quiet and the peacefulness you can get here… people will leave you alone if that’s what you want… but to me…
Rural living is not just the fact that you can be independent and alone… but that you know your neighbors and the bad call your insurance agent made that one game and the kids at school by name and you volunteer and you help and you give of yourself, no questions asked.
Then, when it all comes to an end, as it does for everyone, there will be Sadness in the Community, because, at some point, you gave Happiness to the Community.
Poke your head in the door… you might just have some fun and meet some nice people along the way!
January 27, 2011 Yeehaw!
January 27, 2010 No entry.
January 27, 2009 Clues
January 27, 2008 No entry.