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Wednesday, April 7, 2021

What’s normal to us is special to others...

Editorial comment

Life on the East side of the Butler square has brought its own special insight regarding Small Town, USA. Some have jokingly referred to Butler as Mayberry RFD but that statement may be very much the truth. In a positive way.

Make no mistake our country is facing very challenging times but I, and others I’ve talked with lately see a bit of unexpected social metamorphosis- the growing attractiveness of rural America.

In point, there have been several recent encounters with out-of-state folks who have been spotted walking around the square, curiously admiring the surroundings. 

One of which was a well dressed man in a fancy car (certainly not a gravel road compatible type) that was traveling from Minneapolis to points south when he took the Butler exit for bathroom break. In our conversation he told me he saw a sign that led to the square and his curiosity got the best of him. 

I caught him reading the old newspapers plastered in our window and he asked, “is that real news?”. I had to laugh, and admit it was. He said he didn’t mean it in a bad way. He went on to say that life down here must be pretty good and the news reflected that. He also pointed out the stark differences between his hometown of about a half million and Butler.

This chatty fellow, definitely the salesman type, asked a lot of questions about history and happenings around the area. Some 40 minutes later, we both realized we had other things to do but I could tell that our small town was going to leave him with a great impression. In fact, he shook my hand so long I thought he was trying to steal a finger.

As he was getting into his car he made a point to tell me that in his 40+ years of travel, he always meets the nicest people in small towns and rural areas.

In the last few months, I’ve had 5 or 6 encounters with people just like this guy, all who which remarked how friendly us local folks are and how they love the charm of our little town.

I guess sometimes it takes an outsider to remind you of the goodness of your environment. Keep it up rural America, as this is exactly what is needed to work through these trying times.