There’s not much I miss about my hometown aside from my parents. In a small town everyone knows everything about everyone or at least they assume that they do. I loved coming to a bigger town and being anonymous. No one knows who I am. I can be anyone I want. This anonymity has been great because as I’ve grown up, I’ve realized that the person I was way back when is not the person I am now, nor is it the person I will be in the future. People change and their ideals and personalities evolve. Though, when you live in a small town it’s hard to change people’s perception of you. However there are some good things about a small town like the fact that everyone knows everyone. I know this is very similar to what I just said I don’t like about small towns but there is a distinct difference. Whether you’re at the dry cleaner’s, tailor’s, bank or out for dinner you are usually met with a familiar face. You can chat with them for a bit. You usually ask after each others families and cover a few other chit chat topics. Having this rapport with these various characters, I think makes life more enjoyable. It also often ensures better service. Being in a larger town it’s hard to build this rapport from scratch.
I was reminded of this a couple of weeks ago when I took a pair of Richard’s slacks to the tailor. I looked up a shop on Yelp and chose it because of its proximity but also because of the inexpensive price I was cited. When I went to collect the pants the tailor showed and explained the work he had done, which I appreciated. I also noticed that the radio in the store was set to NPR which I had just been listening to in my car. I was happy that I was able to hear the end of the story that had been playing and I mentioned that to him. Then we started chatting about NPR and about our news consumption. That’s when I realized just how much I missed that small-town community feel. Now that I know we’ll be here for a few more years, I’ve decided to make a better effort to foster these relationships with people around me whether it be the tailor, the dry cleaner, the bank teller or the waiter or waitress at my favorite restaurant. Oh and for any Tulsans reading this, if you’re ever in need of a good men’s tailor check out Vardey’s Tailor Shop on Lewis and 51st!