You Grew up in the Country (or City) If…

         An old friend of mine named Tag sent me an e-mail that set me to thinking.  She has given me permission to show her her story in my book.  Tag was a big help to my friend Indie Jenkins when he was down and out, and any friend of Indian’s is a friend of mine.

        Tag is a character I know my readers are gonna love.  Her real name is Lucille Taggert, but in bluegrass a nickname is a sure sign of acceptance, and her nickname is Tag.  It came from Tag along.  Bless her heart, when Indie was in trouble she was there for him every step of the way.  Indie pretends to be a gruff sort, and he’d never say it, but I think he thinks of her like a little sister, or maybe even a daughter- she is a lot younger than Indie.

        If there was ever a modern women, Tag is the one.  She’s feminine enough, but you talk about one more tough nosed negotiator.  I can’t wait to tell you what all she did for Indie.

        In her e-mail, I was struck by how similar her background was to mine.  Nowadays, Tag is a business woman.  She wears business clothes, carries a briefcase, and is involved in high level negotiations.  She has not just succeeded in a man’s world, she’s dang near conquered it.

        However, when you look at some of her thoughts about growing up in the country, at one time she was just a barefoot little freckled young’un going down to the swimming hole.

        So, I decided this would make a good post.  “You know you grew up in the country if….”  I hope some of y’all will post some of your own.

        I don’t want my city people to feel left out though.  So as the mirror image to the headline, if you grew up in the city how ’bout posting on your experience.  “You Grew up in the City if…..”  That aspect would be more educational for me, ’cause I know very little of city life.  As always, I am interested in people and how they came about their unique perspectives.  

        So, here are Tag’s thoughts.  And by the way, she’s gonna  visit Indie at the Nursing Home soon.  When she does I’ll post about that, too.
Tag and Growing up in the Country

1.  Did you have one mom in your pack of friends who made the best 
     Kool-Aid (because she used a lot of sugar)?
2. If someone asked your favorite flavor of homemade ice cream, did 
    you really have a favorite?  Was the favorite, “any kind”?
3.  Was the sign of a good day playing indicated by the number of
    dirt rings on your neck & arms?
4.  How much did you like “innertubin”?

        I liked these, and I ain’t gonna add to ’em for now, but I hope you guys will.  And tell me about the city too- can’t leave out my blog pals there.

Dr. B

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26 Comments on “You Grew up in the Country (or City) If…”

  1. Cindy Carter Says:

    Gosh, I have so many running around in my head.

    1. You drank milk straight from the cow (after it had been strained of course) that was still warm. And made your own butter from the cream scaped off the top.

    2.You had to shoot the gun to make the dog quit barking in the night at something he had treed.

    3. You drove 15 miles to the nearest grocery store to lay in provisions for the week.

    4. Your brothers were your only playmates because the nearest neighbor more than two miles away.

    5. If the electricity went out it might be two days before you got it back.

  2. drtombibey Says:

    Ms. Cindy,

    Those are so good. I just knew you’d be the first one to respond, and they would excellent.

    Men folks take notice- women who grew up in the country are handy with firearms.

    Dr. B

  3. keepbreathing Says:

    Growing up in the backwoods of Maine, summer was never complete until I had

    1) scrambled over the rocky coastline at least one time,
    2) pulled at least one wood tick from myself,
    3) spent the equivalent of at least one 24-hour day stomping around in the woods aimlessly.

    I really do miss the country. I’m trying to talk the wife into moving more rurally…wish me luck!

  4. drtombibey Says:

    Hey Keep breathing,

    I like your title. Keep em breathing man, ’cause without the “As” of the ABCs, we’re all outta luck.

    My wife and I went to Maine once many years ago. It was beautiful. I especially liked a place called Moose Head Lake. Have you ever been there? Also I recall all these little road side places to eat where they had lobsters in tanks and you sat at picnic tables much like the fish camps around home.

    There was a place called the Pilot’s Grill. I think it was in Bangor. They had this lobster thing called Baked Stuffed Lobster. Mercy!

    When (if) I ever retire we’re gonna have to go back up there.

    Maybe on this interactive post we’ll hear from folks who grew up in the city, but moved out to the country. Might inspire the missus, who knows?

    Dr. B

  5. katkmeanders Says:

    Your list had me cackling, and going “Yep, yep, yep…” =^..^= I may not “speak” like it, but I grew up in the country in many ways.

  6. drtombibey Says:

    Ms. Kat,

    Maybe growing up in the country is more a state of mind than a physical location.

    Dr. B

  7. katkmeanders Says:

    Well, Kansas is mostly farm country ya know? The places we lived at, I could either get to a river to wander at, (and catch crawdads, minnows, turtles, frogs, toads etc.) or get to a wheat field/farmer’s pond lickety split. I grew up very close to nature, even though it wasn’t on a farm, but in a “small town”. (Very small…)

  8. Mrs. Chili Says:

    A while ago, Auntie posted a list of “you know you grew up in Boston if” statements, and I laughed at damned near every one of them because damned near every one of them applied (applies?) to me. Yep. I’m a Yankee…

  9. Cindy Carter Says:

    I thought of one more… If you after you turn out the lights, you can’t see your hand in front of your face….you live in the country.

  10. drtombibey Says:

    Ms. Kat,

    Cool. All I know about Kansas is from “The Wizard of Oz.” Those flying monkeys used to scare my wife when she was a little girl. Every time I think of Kansas, I think of “Somewhere Over The Rainbow.” It is one of my all time favorite songs.

    Dr. B

  11. drtombibey Says:


    I’ll have to look that up on Auntie’s site. If I ever get a chance to play music in Boston, I would hate to be totally ignorant of the culture there.

    Dr. B

  12. drtombibey Says:

    ms Cindy,

    That’s a good’un too. I thought of a couple more.

    You know you’re from the country if your idea of chrome is duct tape, and if your City Council meets at the Dairy Queen.

    (I’m country, so I can make fun of myself!)

    Dr. B

  13. katkmeanders Says:

    *wry* Well, least ya didn’t ask me where Toto was… Heh, my stock reply to that is “I ate Toto!” *hmph* *wink*. Central Kansas is a wonderful place to watch a lightning storm. It’s fairly flat, so you get a panoramic view. Spectacular! Also, it has Cheyenne Bottoms, a Nationally (Internationally?) acclaimed wetlands preserve.

  14. tntexplorers Says:

    Hey Dr. B. This one has me stumped. I grew up in the city and the country. The north and the south. The east and the West. Back in the south now. Crazy, fun, wild ride. But you now you’re a country girl when the city folk terrify the child inside. Some days, I prefer the cows.

  15. katkmeanders Says:

    I got one! If two of your High School classmates nearly get into a knockdown dragout brawl because one of them says they can drive a John Deere tractor, and the other says “No you can’t, you’re not smart enough, my GPA is higher than yours, so I can, and you can’t!” you might have grown up “country”. (This really happened, in Art class one day, they were best friends, and the friendship soured for some time after that.)

  16. drtombibey Says:

    Ms. Kat,

    Cool. Makes me want to visit. Docs have to stay close to home, but my readers allow me a glimpse of the rest of the world. For a guy with a big imagination, that is important.

    Dr. B

  17. drtombibey Says:

    Hey TNTEXP,

    As the bluegrass song says, you have been all around this old world. I hate to admit it, but I’m a little scared of the city. When I do go, I seek out a guide who knows the landscape.

    Dr. B

  18. drtombibey Says:

    Ms. Kat,

    Oh my goodness, I hate that for those boys. If you grew up together, you need to stick together.

    I love the country, but it ain’t worth a fist fight. Very little is to me, though. I prefer high level negotiations over brawls any day. It takes more time, but no one gets hurt too bad that way.

    Dr. B

  19. Billy Says:

    We live in the city but visited grandparents for extended visits.
    1] I aways knew I was in the country when you could go outside and smell the rain coming.
    2] When you walked you could hear scilence broken by a breeze.

    My most vivid memory of the city was when I was about four, soon after we had moved to a city apartment mom had unpacked and was wanting new soil for her ivy. We went down the elevator around the sidewalk to the alley where she found some hard clay dirt that she chopped up with a butcher knife cusing the day she allowed dad to take the job. It was a scary Christmas that year, We did not have a fireplace and I knew there was no way he would find our place up on the fourth floor — but he did.


  20. Cindy Carter Says:

    How about….If you catch the chicken in your front yard before it ends up on your table for Sunday dinner, you might live in the country?

    My favorite calf was called T-Bone. Any guesses what happened to him?

    And don’t get me started on all those nights shelling beans and peas….LOL

    We never had pizza until I was about 12.

    If your are more used to cow bells than car horns.

  21. drtombibey Says:

    Mr. Billy,

    I swanee, I believe you’s people are more country than I am! I love the smell of rain too, but around here I’m about to forget it lately.

    Dr. B

  22. drtombibey Says:

    Ms. Cindy,

    Tis true about the chickens. I’ve seen folks wring their neck before- there is a reason for the “chicken with your head cut off” saying.

    I fear that whatever was left over of ole T-bone went to that same glue factory in the sky my Roarco the pony went to.

    Yep, I’ve shelled beans and peas too, and I remember when we got our first pizza place my uncle complained about them bringing “fur-un” food to town.

    And my grandfather used to tell of the first model T’s coming down the road.

    About all I can say is, “Girl, you’s country, too.”

    Dr. B

  23. katkmeanders Says:

    I got the feeling there was more behind the “explosion” I witnessed, and that was just the final straw. They did make up some months later. (I guess some teenage guys do that?) I wanted to tell both of ’em to go soak their heads in a barrel of cold water, but I didn’t. I got another one: If you are annoyed by an early-riser neighbor’s car motor spoiling the “Dawn Chorus” so you cannot appreciate the segue from crickets to kaitydids fully, you might be “Country”. *smile*

  24. drtombibey Says:

    Yep, Ms. Kat. Solitude, or at least being with the spring peeper frogs, can be a good thing at times.

    Dr. B

  25. Cindy Carter Says:

    I thought of another one. If you are related to yourself on both sides of the family, you are probably from the country. That or either you are descended from royalty. And I know I am nothing but a “royal pain”. LOL

  26. drtombibey Says:

    ms. Cindy,

    That’s a good one.

    Here’s another one for someone who has never amounted to much. “He’s out standing in his field.” (As in out there with the cows.)

    Dr. B

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