I miss many things about Kentucky. And though it took a while, I finally realized what it is that I truly long to experience again.
Let's start with what I don't miss - the people. Those are the most mixed bag when it comes to my thoughts of my home state. I've met some of the most honest, hard-working, and caring people there. Yet, I've also run into some awful apples. They were judgmental, hardened by poverty and suffering from a lack of opportunity - all of which conspired to make some men and women folks you'd never want to know. I know this sounds awful, but I can take or leave most of those living there. That's not where the magic is for me.
What I miss the most is the place itself. Stepping out onto the porch in the late afternoon of July, you're hit by the humidity, temperatures in the upper eighties, and my memory of those experiences takes me right back there.
But, mostly ... it's the sound. There's nothing like that sound. Summer in my homeland is green, vibrant, and thrumming with the constant reminder of life. The forests of northern California, where I live now are solemn, silent cathedrals. But Kentucky gently roars with a symphony of birds, cicadas, grasshoppers, and crickets.
That's what I really miss. I miss the symphony.