There once was a boy who grew up working, fishing, and hunting on the plains of Nebraska. He loved the open space almost as much as he loved his family. In high school, he talked to his friends about girls, cars, and where he would like to live some day. Some of his friends wanted to move to exotic, faraway lands where they would drive boats to impress scantily clad girls. Others wanted to drive dog sleds and hunt the wild lands of the far north where the permafrost would make girls want to cuddle in their bear hides. But this boy wanted a piece of land much like the one he grew up on and a girl who could fish.
After high school, he tried living in the city. It wasn't what he wanted. He tried moving near the great park called Yellowstone – he still had to live in the city. He traveled to Mexico and Alaska, but he only wanted to be back home in Nebraska.
Eventually, he met a girl who confused him so much that he couldn't help but love her. They dated for a while, went on a wild road trip, and lived together for three years. He loved her, but something still restricted his happiness: they rented a place in town.
On his twenty-fifth birthday, the boy woke up and announced “I am a quarter of a century old today.” The girl blinked, grumbled “appy erfday,” and rolled over. If the house wasn’t burning, she didn’t get up at six a.m.
The boy drove to his favorite fishing spot, just a few miles from where he grew up. Later in the day, he visited his parents. His dad knew of a house for sale that was out in the country and right on the creek. The boy wanted that house – or at least the land it was on.
He went home that night and begged his girlfriend to go to the bank with him. He was so excited that he paced all over their tiny rented space as he talked. He had to have that land…and the first-time home-buyer’s credit would run out soon.
The girl wasn’t so sure. As a child, she had lived just a few miles from a town in North Carolina. After her parents divorced, she and her mom moved to Nebraska, but she flew back to North Carolina to spend the summers with her dad. As she gained new friends and kept in touch with her old friends, she realized that most other girls wanted to talk about who they would marry, how many kids they would have, and what their wedding dresses would look like. She preferred to talk about her future as a scientist, or a computer systems analyst, or maybe a female Hugh Hefner – you never know.
By the time she met her boy-friend, she had started attending Wayne State College; spent a semester in Europe; dropped out; spent a year working at a DEB in Grand Island; and registered at Grand Island Central Community College to try to figure out what to do with her life.
She had learned that she liked being in town, and that didn’t change much when she and the boy moved to Kearney, so she could attend UNK. When the boy asked her to buy a house with him out in the country, she replied “I haven’t lived more than five minutes from Subway in nine years.” The house in the country meant more than just moving away from her favorite eatery, though.
She wasn’t ready to start a family; she didn’t feel old enough to own ten acres; and she absolutely did not want to live next to a corn field.
Dustin Selden: email@example.com
Brittany Seawell: Britt_brat_15@hotmail.com