This past weekend Sticks had its yearly fall festival: a parade, booths run by local businesses and organizations, and lots of fair food. Because I had to help set-up the FRIENDS of the Library's booth--selling used books and membership--I was able to be up to see the sunrise and enjoy the quiet, blocked off downtown streets; to walk around and nod at the other early birds, setting up their booths, drinking coffee; to see as Main Street slowly fill with people, followed by a parade, followed by even more people; to see the town bustling.
As I walked around and looked at booths and chatted with friends and neighbors I realized that I actually know people in town now. I actually could look out into the sea of faces and recognize patrons and kiddos who frequent the library, I even got hugs from some of the kids I used to read to when I did school visits, pre-Prairie Dawn. I've been here for nearly a year and I'm not such a stranger anymore. And maybe I've finally come to think of this place as home. Not home forever, but home for now...and that's a good feeling. I think.