To the editor:
Small-town people are wonderful. I’ve lived in Craig for almost two years, and everyone I’ve met has made me feel very welcome. When I first moved here, I had trouble finding some places so I would ask for directions. I normally like to ask a senior citizen — I just assume that they have lived here for a while and pretty much know how to get anywhere. I was in Craig for about three weeks and was having trouble locating a place when I stopped an elderly lady walking downtown to ask if she could help me. These are the directions she gave me: “Just keep walking down this street until you get to where the old hardware store used to be. Then turn left and go down two streets and you’ll see where the Fosters lived. It’s a shame what happened to that youngest ’un,” she added. I nodded my head sympathetically, not having a clue what happened to the “youngest ’un.” She continued by telling me to take a right there and about four blocks down it will be on my right. “Ya can’t miss it. If you make it to the river you’ve gone too far.” She then walked away feeling good that she helped someone while I stood there twice as confused as before.
Small-town people also have a way of speaking that’s all their own. It’s not uncommon to make out two or three words into one, for instance “mold” — that’s anything you’ve had for awhile, or ovair which could be anyplace as long as it’s somewhere else, or my favorite “yesterdenin” means anything that occurred last night. I’ve personally heard this spoken more than once since I’ve been in Craig. “We got so much rain yesterdenin, I don’t know if mold truck’ll make it ovair to get cha.” Either in spite of these differences or because of them — small town people are the best. I like Craig, and I may stay for a while. So if you see me flailing around the river, it means I’ve gone too far.