Sunday, February 26, 2017

Opening paragraphs......................

Like most small children, I learned my home address so that if I got lost, I could tell a grown-up where to take me.  In kindergarten, when the teacher asked me where I lived, I could recite the address without skipping a beat, even though my mother changed addresses frequently, for reasons I never understood as a child.  Still, I always distinguished "my address" from "my home."  My address was where I spent most of my time with my mother and sister, wherever that might be.  But my home never changed:  my great-grandmother's house, in the holler, in Jackson, Kentucky.
     Jackson is a small town of about six thousand in the heart of southeastern Kentucky's coal country.  Calling it a town is a bit charitable:  There's a courthouse, a few restaurants - almost all of them fast-food chains - and a few other shops and stores.  Most of the people live in the mountains surrounding Kentucky Highway 15, in trailer parks, in government-subsidized housing, in small farmhouses, and in mountain homesteads like the one that served as the backdrop for the fondest memories of my childhood.

J. D. Vance,  Hillbilly Elegy:  A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis

No comments:

Post a Comment