I don't know what image gets conjured up when you think of the rural south, the one stop towns. When someone tells me they live "out in the country" I often picture a dinky house on a dirt plot with some dusty farm next door, far out from anything. I never like to be too far out from stuff- grocery, stores, friends, etc. But there is a simple beauty to the country.
I went in a field trip with my boy and his kindergarten class to a petrified Forest "in the country" and this involved about a 25 mile ride after getting off the interstate on a two lane country road.
Houses, rolling hills, horses, farms... there were so many opportunities to stop and take a picture, just because of the simple, God given beauty. I didn't because 5 miles off the highway, my gas light went on and I had no idea how far it would take me on this country road or if there was a gas station ahead. I passed probably three cars on the whole journey, if that.
As I took in the beauty, one undeveloped mile after another, I said screw the petrified Forest, and put a gas station into my iPhone.
I came upon a wide farm and passed a huge green farming tractor riding along the shoulder. The guy in the cab was talking on his smart phone. What an amusing scene- the basics of historical food production coupled with the top of technology, all in rural Mississippi.
It was quiet, the air was clean, the sky was blue and freckled with puffy clouds, the horses seemed happier.
These horses itched their backs on the ground, hoisted themselves up flicked their manes, looked at me with an air of displeasure. These were some animated horses.
The wildflowers are quite lovely and everywhere- purple, fushia, yellow.
This is my kids picking some flowers. And believe it it not, this is right next to my house.
Us New Yorkers and northerners have to get out of the congestion, the poor air quality and embrace the country sometimes. Even a ride up the Taconic north of peekskill, or removed Connecticut like north of New Milford, Litchfield and on will do it. Especially in the fall...
And yes I did get gas when the back road intersected a bigger back road. I also found that the ride was better than the petrified Forest. A number marked one big hard piece of tree after another. I liked the gift shop and flaming was cool.
Had I sped along at 75 cause I could and not taken in what was around me I would have missed a big part of the gift of that day. Sure a picnic with my son on my birthday is priceless (with 40 kindergarteners around) but you miss so much when life is taken as an event, and not the whole of the adventure.