Exploring Our Town

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This past Saturday, we explored our town a bit. We walked here and there, checking things out as we walked. In the end, we stopped at a local coffee house/cowgirl shop and had a cup of hot chocolate on this cold morning. While we walked, I took quite a few pictures of the local scenery – primarily the old houses on my side of town.

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Among the decorative older houses are some that are square and, while they may look plain, just as stunning in their subtle beauty.

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Walking around our section of town is very enjoyable when you stop to check out what was built many years ago. You won’t find two houses the same around here and each has its own charm and elegance. From the bigger …

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to the smaller.

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Coming to the train tracks, one has to wonder about the history of this town. Was the train built through here for the farmers with the town springing up around it or was the town here and the train was built to the town?

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Some older, now unused, buildings still stand down by the railroad tracks. Being the curious explorer that I am, I’d love to get the key and venture into the buildings, seeing what’s inside and what has been left to sit quietly until someone else comes along to unlock the doors.

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We stop along a river that’s moving wildly down its own path and the boys stop to throw some rocks in. Is it it a boy thing – this throwing rocks in the river? What’s the fascination of doing this? I’ve thought about stopping them from doing it and then wondered, does it really hurt anything for the boys to throw rocks in the river?

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Moving along, we find some newer looking houses mixed in with the old, the closer we get to the center of town. Several of these houses trip every trigger I’ve got for the old and antique.

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Looking back over our shoulder, we can see the railroad tracks and the hills beyond. I’m not sure what the giant W is for, since the name of this town doesn’t have a W in it. One day, I’ll find a local and ask.

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Peeking through an old wooden fence and around some old and stately trees, there’s an ancient looking brick house. What is it and how long has it been here? Unless I knock on the door, I’m not likely to figure that answer out. I can say that this house has been here long enough for all the trees to grow to full maturity, leaving nearly no room for anyone to see inside the yard and check out the house beyond.

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As I stated before, it is rare to find two houses the same in this section of town. Each is unique and each has it’s own purpose and function.

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One could almost sit for hours and reminisce about days gone by: horses and buggy’s combined with ladies all dressed for a day of socializing, smoke billowing out of the chimneys before electric heat.

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A stunning house sitting in the midst of others, adding its architecture to the rest of the town.

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And then we come into town, waving at one of the local cops on our way. It’s getting cold and we’re itching to get to our local hangout for some much-needed hot chocolate/coffee.

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Entering the town proper, you pass the town library – a historic building with its own character.

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With a warm smile, one of the two sisters that own our local coffee house/cowgirl store quickly sets to making some hot chocolate and coffee to warm up my little family. Never anything but friendly, these sisters always have people in their shop, either visiting, drinking coffee or shopping for their latest outfit and accessory.

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We continue our walk and again meet up with the railroad tracks. Across the tracks is a local landmark, the Hotel Metlen. Now only a bar/restaurant/casino and not a hotel, this place is commonly spoken of when you ask for directions. Big and still stunning, it stands out in this town as a place that everyone knows.

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We ended off our tour with a look at the local antique/junk yard. I don’t mean insult when I say junk yard; however, this yard is full of just about anything you might be looking for: from lawn decorations to household repair items, bunk beds and wagon wheels, this shop has anything you might be looking for and rarely is it new. The rock wall surrounding it is quite amazing and the boys were spellbound, trying to figure out how all those rocks stayed in place. They couldn’t add a rock to it nor take a rock from it. I told Jen that I’d love to buy the store/land and turn it into a house as this being the fence in the front of my yard and I wonder if it started out that way.

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A last stop to throw pebbles by the handful into the river and we head on back to the house. Our walk around town complete but we didn’t even scratch the surface – we just looked at our little section of it.

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