So, in case you didn't know, Athens is my hometown. It's where I grew up, and basically the place I have called home for the majority of my life. Ever since I left Athens about eight years ago, I've had a love affair with that town. My parents still live there, which is an incredibly convenient reason to visit quite often. And of course, I still have many friends there. The boys and I were in Athens on Friday to have the car serviced before our road trip, catch up with Mema, do a little shopping, hang with Pop and take in a little high school football. It was then, that my rose colored glasses were briefly removed.
You see, I've always loved Athens, and don't get me wrong I still do and always will. But, I've always loved it in a way that I often wish I was back there. Back there as a care-free kid or a fancy free college student or even as a family of four. I hear about all the fun activities going on and remember going to all the UGA sporting events as a kid, and assume it would be a fantastic place to raise a family.
On Friday, I took a scenic route to my parents' house and passed through downtown, the heart of Athens. Where the city and commerce meet the campus of the university. As I saw the many sorts of people you see in downtown and the hustle and bustle, I began to wonder would I really like living here? I saw so many students, which in turn just reminded me how far removed I was from actually being one. Would I really like that constant reminder? I think I prefer to limit it to six Saturdays each fall and the occasional trip to campus.
It was in this revelation that I realized Athens wasn't the "big city, with the small town feel" that I always remembered it for. It's actually a lot closer to being a "city too busy to hate." This revelation also made me appreciate that we've made our home in a community that not only feels like a small town, but pretty much is one...at least by my standards.
I'll always have a special place in my heart for A town, but I'm realizing that I'm thankful to be exactly where God placed us. I'll always enjoy my day trips down to Athens for fun with family, shopping and of course, football. But, these days I'm glad it's my former stomping ground and not my current.