Before the fiasco at the desk, I spent yesterday roadtripping with my dad down to the ancestral homelands of Appalachia. The fall colors were beautiful and therefore uncapturable on a mediocre digital camera aimed out the passenger window, but we talked and listened to Creedence, Elder (which he'd never heard and liked) and whatever was on XM radio which got boring really fast just like the terrestrial airwaves.
Every year another one or two pass away, and there's fewer people to visit. We stop by the old farmhouse where my grandma was raised and it's locked up now, the garden empty, the canna bulbs probably still in the root cellar. Some other people are looking at it, they say their house burned down due to some bad wiring. It and the hundred acres behind it, the barn with the grand piano falling apart, for rent now.
It's beautiful out here, but I think I'd get lonely and miss my art museums. I see the occasional spraypainted black van doubtless owned by some metal kids, the occasional band t-shirt on the street. The music store down there carries more banjos than up here. It hits me how different the issues are out here. How if the bridge is out, it's unlikely to get replaced, these roads are so narrow and full of pebbles I understand the need for four wheel drive and pickup trucks. Abandoned baseball fields and stripped houses, railroad paths to nowhere, meandering roads between the hollers. At least in Clevelandia, a few people stick around, I wonder who will be in these towns in another 30 years.