Springfield SarahStar

Oh Springfield... so pretty, so wealthy... so.... idyllic.
I never realized those things about Springfield.
I think I get why people leave and come back so often. I'm not moving back, just to note, but I get it now why people who grow up there would want to return.

It's iconically American Small Town.
It's a beautiful place where there are great big bowing trees and old buildings.
There are squares and rotundas and easy-to-navigate streets where nobody is likely to be shot.
Parking is ample.

It's also wealthy.
I didn't get that until just now... it's a prosperous place where people have cars and where they shop a lot and eat out at restaurants a lot.
Businesses tend to stay in business - places that I world have thought would be done for are still ticking along, comforting me with their same-old signs, menus, and art.

Even the more run-down places are nice, compared to other small towns where I've lived and compared to Tucson (which I don't think is a fair comparison).
A neighborhood in Springfield is a neighborhood - people are outside working on their houses, even the dumpier ones.
All of the houses look like they go together whereas here, when you drive down the street and if you can see anything around the inordinate amount of very big trucks on the road, you would not see houses that look like they belong together, except in planned communities where the houses not only seem to belong together but they are literally the same house with a couple of variation, maybe in color or garage door placement.

I also noticed that there aren't huge apartment complexes like there are in other places I've lived.
Springfield has a few, of course, but they are on the edge of town or something. There are high-rise apartments down-town and town-houses but there aren't the rows of complexes that indicate a population maybe not as financially capable or a more transient place.

No, I get it why people who leave have a tendency to return.
It's safe.
You live well for less money.
It's easy to know people.
You drive around on old streets with old trees making the view feel rich with the way things dapple and drape.

I get it why I could never get past being homesick and why I felt - FEEL- such a sense of insecurity for moving to Tucson.
Springfield is so pretty, so safe, and so ideal.
I think that if my nature was a content one, Springfield would be a wonderful place for me to return to.

But that's the rub.
I'm not a content person by nature.
I'm curious and sometimes angry.
I have a hard times not taking things personally and not cutting to the chase to get to the next part of the story.
For me to return to Springfield would be for me to try to be something I'm not, just as being in Tucson is maybe a little bit of me trying on a place that's not entirely accurate or innate to who I am.
No, I'm not entirely Springfield.
I guess because I started out in Carbondale and that's a whole different part of the state - it's more poor and dirtier and it's University is predominant.
I'm weirder than Springfield.

Interestingly, a perceptive friend asked me if I missed being the one who stood out as different, if I missed being SarahStar, "You know... sparkly and like, a star."

I do miss that.
I miss people saying things like that to me.

I don't stand out here at all.
I'm quieter and more reserved, partly because I have to be in an act of self-preservation on all levels. Tucson is dangerous. It's not physically safe and it's not full of people who would necessarily care if I shut my door and refused to open it.
Trust me on that, I know from experience, actually.
So I play things much more closely than I did when I lived in Springfield and I could be a total mess, but in a good way.
I do miss that.

I know Springfield isn't where I want to live, even though I think of it as being sort of American perfection and of being one of the safest places I have ever known.

I know I want to find something, though; I want to find somewhere that will allow me to be a big fish and that will also give me room for discontent, for exploration, for... growth.

arizonasarah at 1:16 p.m.

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