Leaving South

I thought the last writing prompt from #bloglikecrazy was difficult. Then I read the next one. Keep in mind, this was for the #bloglikecrazy event that took place last month. I participated in the event but opted not to do the writing prompts at that time. But I am doing them now and wanted to take my time with each and every one. This is the next prompt:

Saturday, Nov. 3 — Write something risky. You know, that post you’ve always wanted to write but didn’t because you’re afraid of how your readers will react. You’re afraid of what your family and friends will think. Yes, that one. That’s the post you need to write and you need to write it right now. I did just that earlier this year. That post received more comments than anything I’ve ever published online and received more page views than nearly all other posts to

At first, I thought I would never ever come up with a topic for this one but it wasn’t a few hours later that the topic came to me. I want to leave Huntsville, Alabama and maybe even the whole state. I could even go so far as to say I want to leave the south. Yikes! I know.

The South has been good to me though. I did try to leave it once, a very long time ago, and didn’t last very long before I had to come back “home” with my tail between my legs.

I moved to The South in 1990 and to Alabama in 1991 – that’s right, I lived in Georgia first before moving to Alabama. So this makes 22 years now that I’ve lived in The South. Huntsville is the longest place I’ve stayed put in my total entire life. I do call it home now. But I am ready for a change. I am ready to leave. I am not going to leave because of two reasons; The Gent’s family is here and The Girlchild is a senior this year. But those are the only two reasons I am still here.

I may not want to leave The South all together but I’d certainly like to get out of Huntsville. I just feel like this place is so small anymore. I have been there done that and I am ready to move on. I see the same ole places and people. The events are the same thing over and over again. It is old and worn out and I am bored. I think I’ve pretty much outgrown the city of Huntsville.

Perhaps I can keep Huntsville as our base home and travel a lot instead? Yeah, right, like we can find the time and money to do that. No, I am ready for a permanent change. I’ve always wanted to go north east. The Gent will frown up on this because he is a southern coastal kind of guy. And I am not opposed to going to the coast either. Of course, I’ve always wanted to try living in Italy too. 🙂

The question I keep coming up with is this, “Do I want to live in a big town or a small town?” Well, if I think Huntsville is small, why would I want to go to another small town? There is a difference between a town like Huntsville and a true small town though. Huntsville is a small town but it likes to think of itself as a big town and can come off as a little snobbish. But I know better. I’ve been out there and I’ve seen a little teeny tiny portion of the rest of the world. I was stationed in Washington, D.C. for four years when I was in the Navy.

However, I was raised in a small town too, a little town of Wheelersburg, Ohio and later in Portsmouth, Ohio. I also lived in Orlando, Florida during some of my teenage years. When I left the Navy I moved to Albany, Georgia and this was my first experience with the south. I lived there for a year before moving over to Huntsville in 1991. I’ve seen a lot of growth in Huntsville (well, Madison anyway) and it was exciting at the time. But I am done. I need to move on.

Caged and in a rut is a good description of how I’ve felt for the last couple of years. If it weren’t for my husband and my children, I would have gone insane already. They keep me grounded and feeling okay. They give me purpose. Maybe my wanderlust is trying to come out because I am approaching empty nest syndrome. That could possibly be the reason I feel the need to leave. I never really thought about it that way until I started writing this blog entry.

In the meantime, until I can get the heck out of here, I’ll continue to get up and do the things I do every single day. I’ll stay put in Huntsville, Alabama and be grateful for what I do have; a loving husband, healthy children, and a non chaotic life. I’ll just have to tell the wanderlust Carol to cool it for a little while longer.

This past year I did get to do quite a bit of traveling and that will be another post for another time when I do a reflection post for 2012 later this month.

Thanks for reading,

[Blogger’s Note: The title of this blog “Leaving South” is also a working title of another novel I’m working on, moved to the back burner for now.]


  • Zoot

    I didn’t realize I had been in Alabama 19 years until I read your entry! I moved here in 1993. CRAZY.

    I’m a small-town girl. Truly. I am very high-anxiety and often feel like Huntsville is sometimes too big for me 🙂 I like access to bigger areas for the cultural and adventure side of my needs, but in terms of day-to-day living? The small town (preferably without interstates :)) is best for me!

    • admin

      I understand. I waffle between wanting to live in a city much smaller than HSV and living in a huge city. I can’t make up my mind. And yes, both you and This Belle Rocks are right, at least HSV is close to all the bigger cities.

  • Kim @ This Belle Rocks

    You know, I feel much the same way you do. I moved over here to be with my husband and really tried to like it. And I do, except I’m kind of the opposite: I don’t do anything here. I pretty much go to work and then come home, and like to go junk/antique hunting on my days off.

    The types of concert and other entertainment events I like to attend rarely come here. I haven’t really made many friends here – plenty of acquaintances, but not many people who have called me up to come watch a movie or hang out. (But don’t get me wrong; I am so thankful for those that have!)

    I get what you mean about it coming off snobbish, but I’m not in the same situation. You know in my work, I see a lot of affluent people, many of whom are very nice…..but it all just reminds me of what I don’t have, both materially and personally. Yes, I know, it’s silly.

    Anyway, I get it. I plan on going back to school for a better career, and once that’s done, I am considering leaving as well. Just considering, though. There is a lot good to be said about Huntsville – at least it is very centrally located to almost every big city in the southeast!

    I was going to tell you, I was looking for your blog the other night to get caught up, and for some reason sometimes it doesn’t show up. I’m not sure if that’s an issue with your server, or with my computer at times, but I wanted to put that out there because I’m reading for sure when I can!

    Also, I posted this in response to your comment at my place, but I was going to see if you wanted to go antique-ing and/or thrifting one of these days? I know schedules are an issue, especially this time of year. But things will eventually settle back down!

  • Kim @ This Belle Rocks

    Why I love Meridianville: VERY small town, decent schools, everything closes by 10 pm. 30-40 minutes AT MOST to any place I need to go in Huntsville; the north and eastern borders of HSV city limits are 10-15 minutes away.

    Huntsville actually seems like a very small town to me. I guess that’s because I know all the same people and go the same places….I’d probably be overwhelmed if I got out and just drove all over the city, though. I didn’t know Huntsville went all the way to the Tennessee River!

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