Wednesday, July 23, 2008

How Low Can I Go? (Population-Wise, That Is)

A number of people have expressed skepticism about my ability to live in small town America (under 100,000 people), especially places as small as Eureka Springs, AR (under 5,000). I get it. I’ve spent the last decade in the two largest cities in the country (LA and NYC). I’m a foodie. A culture vulture. An EW subscriber. Wouldn’t you get bored, they ask? It’s a fair question. But I’m telling you – the signs just keep pointing me there. Signs like this one.

This past weekend, I went on a girls’ wine tasting trip to Santa Barbara, two hours north of LA. We made the fateful choice of staying at the historic Union Hotel in teeny tiny Los Alamos (even smaller than Eureka Springs!), and yet again, I felt a real tug. I know, I know. What’s going on with me? Blame the pastoral countryside, the colorful people and the beguiling juxtaposition of ruggedness (bikers, cowboys) and sophistication (winemakers, organic restaurants).

Tomorrow I’ll post a full account of my highly memorable date with Los Alamos. I’ll also try to deconstruct my growing obsession with historic small towns. (Yes, I think we are at the full-blown obsession stage. Paging the geographical Dr. Freud!)

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