Weeks and weeks of rain and storms. Every dropless moment spent dashing to complete some chore before the next torrent began but today there was sun. A perfect sort of day, with bright warmth streaming through canopied leaves and cool breeze rising off the water, a day to take for ourselves and nothing more.
There’s a small town about 30 minutes away that we enjoy visiting, Eldon Missouri. Founded in the late 1800’s, it is home to part of the areas mennonite community and a market we love, Nolt’s Country Market.
Out front, is a greenhouse filled with vibrant hanging baskets, succulents and the most gorgeous homegrown produce.
Inside, the shelves are lined with every home canned vegetable, jam, jelly and preserve imaginable. Huge bags of homemade pastas, cake & cookie mixes, and tubs of candies beckon and hand stitched aprons line the wall.
The baked goods are fresh and real food, like bread that must be eaten within a few days or it goes moldy, unlike the store bought loaf in my pantry that I’m too afraid to eat. 3 months and counting and it’s as soft as the day I bought it and not a spot of mold! People, it’s not an epidemic of gluten intolerance that’s making us sick! It’s eating fake food!
If you’re interested in spices, this place has an entire room dedicated to that alone! Spices sold in plastic containers for a paltry price.
The ladies behind the counter are busy making sandwiches for the long line of customers and we join them, Clay getting an Italian and myself a turkey on rye.
Taking our fare, we drove through streets lined with small clapboard houses to the city park, already teeming with life and children’s laughter. Finding a shady bench, we sat and ate our lunch while enjoying the children’s lively play and conversations. Apparently the boys were all zombies but, as one girl reminded us, zombies aren’t really real.
On each side of the bench stood a “Little Free Library” book box. I browsed through adult fiction, young adult and children’s books, vowing I’d bring a book next time to share.
As the sun began to drift, I became nostalgic, recalling how wonderful it could be to live in a tiny town. They remain places where children can play at a neighborhood park without fear, where neighbors are neighborly and everyone knows one another. I imagined the town, gathering at the steepled church we passed in the center of town, on Sunday mornings and afternoons at the small ball field across the street. How wonderful it must be to grow up here… live here… die here, in this tiny town and how lovely it was to borrow it for even just one day, for a day spent just for us.