Jenny Lynn Visits Harvey County

        I’ve been in the same town for many decades and everyone knows me.  Here’s how to find me.  It isn’t hard at all.  We are right smack in between Murphy and Manteo.  Just go to Raleigh and hang a right.  You can’t miss us.  Ask the English Professor.  I think he would say this is the exact route he took. 

        Many of my regular readers already know how to get around here.  However, I’ve got so many new ones, especially from over on FaceBook, that I felt the need to post this again.  My editor decided she’d better check out Harvey County before she signed off on the contract.  This is her story.

        Ms. Jenny drove into Harvey County, and stopped at the first filling station.  The attendant came out.  He had on a blue shirt, and the name ‘Jim’ was stitched over his left pocket.  She rolled down the window.  “Where can I find that Doctor what plays that little bitty guitar?”

        “You ain’t from around here, are ya?  You sick?”

        “No sir.  I’m looking for the Bomb Shelter.”

        “You a picker?”

        “Yep.  Martin guitar in the back seat; D28 herringbone.”


        “I can saw a fiddle, too.  Name’s Jenny Lynn.”

        “Mercy.  So you’re Jenny Lynn.”

        “Yes sir.”

        “Bibey told us you’d be here.  Say you’s wanting to get to the Bomb Shelter?”

        “Yes sir.”

        “Hm. You know where the Burger Barn used to be before they tore it down to make room for the Walmarks parking lot?”

        “Can’t say I do.”

        “Hm.  How ’bout the Volunteer Fire Hall?  You can take a right at it, then go left at Burt’s Funeral Home, and then…..oh. shoot, maybe I just oughta show you.  Let me get my truck.  You follow me.  I don’t think you can get there from here, at least not alone.”

        “Thanks.  Bibey says we’re all in this together.”

        “Yes ma’am.  That’s him all right.  That Bibey now he’s a good’un.  There ain’t another one like him in these parts.”

        “Yeah, I’m beginning to believe it.  Is he a player?”

        “Well, Ms. Jenny, he plays real good for a Doctor.  But now he don’t need to give up his day job.  You heard that Aldridge boy?”

        “Yes sir, he’s got the chops, no doubt.”

        “But, now Bibey he’s a fine Doctor, ma’am.  Why when my Grandma had the heart failure, he’d even come out to the house, and…..”

         Folks it’s like I’ve always said.  Except for the fiction part, my stories are all true.  Sometimes I can hardly wait for all y’all to get to know Harvey County as well as I do.  It’s a fine place to live.

Dr. B

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10 Comments on “Jenny Lynn Visits Harvey County”

  1. Karen Says:

    Dr. B., I giggle every time I read the sentence, “Except for the fiction part, my stories are all true.” I actually think there’s a lot of wisdom in those words. I think the same could be said for all of us at any given time. We’re all relating stories – both spoken and written – but we all add our own spin on things, consciously sometimes and subconsciously other times. Apart from God himself, I really don’t think anyone of us can claim to have a true grasp on reality. All of us see the world through our own eyes. None of us see the world exactly the same way.

    I like Harvey County, by the way. I might have to come and have a look around one day. Just let ’em know I’m the one with the Australian accent. I’m sure there’s not too many people around to confuse me with 🙂

    • drtombibey Says:

      Ms. Karen,

      You and your hubby and those little young’uns are welcome here any time.

      As I said on FaceBook today, one time a fellow told me he didn’t believe in Harvey County. I said, “Well, that ain’t as big a deal as that man what dissed Santa Clause to that little girl, but I feel sorry for you.”

      In reality I’m closing in on being an old man, but in fiction when I close my eyes I still believe I am but a little child.

      I promise you even though we talk a bit country in Harvey County, we think that Australian accent is a very cool thing.

      Dr. B

  2. Felix Miller Says:

    What I always, or at least often, say about writing is that I sometimes confuse fact and fiction but try to always recognize truth.

    I believe in lots of places, from Harvey County to Yoknapatawpha County, and anybody who doesn’t do the same has my sympathy.

    Felix Miller, Recovering Literalist

    • drtombibey Says:

      Brother Felix,

      Exactly right. I want to do my best to show the truth, and I don’t want facts to get in the way.

      Dr. B

  3. MandoGrin Says:

    My favorite line …

    “Bibey says we’re all in this together”

    Reminds me a lot of how it used to be … every task became a commnity endeavor. We might have sacrificed a little privacy back then … but heck, most of didn’t have anything to hide anyway.

    I not only believe in Harvey County, I’m thinking of taking the last 2 dollars left in my 401k and put it toward buying a little place with a big front porch for pickin’. The’ll always be some cornbread, some sweet tea, and an extra mandolin or guitar laying around waiting for you.

    • drtombibey Says:


      When my book comes out, my wife and I plan to travel a bit and pick with folks along the way. I am decent side man, but I’ll need a little help at every stop.

      Like I said, we’re all in it together. The only mando guy I know good enough to carry his gig solo was Jethro Burns (‘Tea for One’) and I’m just not in that league.

      And man do I love sweet tea and cornbread.

      Dr. B

  4. Dr. B, Harvey County sounds like one big family. You’re all in each others’ business, you all know each other, and you all seem to like each other just fine or even more than fine. I want to get to know it just as much as you want us readers to, and believe me, I’m looking forward to your book with a whole lot of excitement.

    • drtombibey Says:

      Thanks msslightly. To me you’re as Harvey County at heart as one of my own young’uns.

      Dr. B

      • Dr. B, I think this is one of the nicest compliments I’ve ever received. And I know it as such because of how you manage to convey so perfectly with your words the goodness of people and the sense of wondrous community that you have over in Harvey County.

  5. drtombibey Says:


    Well, you’re Harvey County thru and thru. In the beginning I told my agent I wanted to find the folks in the world who believed in a life of grace and dignity, and you were one of ’em right from the get go.

    Dr. B

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