From Possum Grape to the Big Peach

I’ve never talked about my hometown very much on my blog, since most of my topics are about communications, news, or life events that happen away from home.

Most people that I meet first remember me by my hometown: Possum Grape, Arkansas. When you say you are from Possum Grape, the conversation goes something like this:

Me: I’m from Possum Grape, Arkansas.
Other Person (OP): What? Did I hear that right?
Me: Yes, Possum Grape.
OP: Possum…like the animal?
Me: Yes, Possum like the animal, only without the O, and Grape like the thing you eat.
OP: Ha! Where is that?

Then, that odd town name sticks out to them and becomes how they remember me. I even had a professor in college that called me “Possum Grape.”

I had another professor in college who told me that he took a drive through my hometown right after I graduated. That made me smile. I gave a presentation about a photo of my hometown’s freeway exit sign in his class, and I guess he liked it.

Possum Grape, AR is so small that it doesn’t even have its own population sign. Instead, it has this sign:

From Possum Grape to the Big Peach via possumgrapepeach.wordpress.com

See?

At one time, maybe 15 years ago, there was an old rusted sign that said the population was 80 people. That sign is gone now. The nearest town is about 4 miles away, and that population count is less than 800.

Fun Fact: It was, I kid you not, illegal to dance in the town closest to me until roughly 2006. My high school had to have prom about 20 miles away from home because of the dancing rule. So, when you think of my hometown, you can seriously compare it to a Kevin Bacon movie and be accurate.

Possum Grape was actually a really good place to grow up. I loved the rural life as a kid. I had tons of animals and got to play outside all the time. I’m sure you will hear more about it as time goes on.

One thing people usually want to know about Possum Grape is how it got its unique name. It was named after a plant that is used for making jam and wine. Speaking of names, if you visited my blog before today, you may have noticed that its name has changed. I am reinventing it to reflect a major change in my life and a new major topic that I will begin blogging about.

Are you ready for it?

I just moved from Possum Grape, Arkansas …

This is the middle of Possum Grape, AR. That little building is an old, closed grocery store that has a really cute opossum painted on the front, and to the right is a church. You can see the church’s little white sign.

To Atlanta, GA!

From Possum Grape to the Big Peach via possumgrapepeach.wordpress.com

This is the world’s largest ferris wheel next to the world’s tallest hotel in Atlanta, GA.

As you can imagine, moving from a town called Possum Grape to the “Big Peach” is a bit of a culture shock…but in the best of ways.

Why would I make such a move? Well, aside from a lot more job opportunity…

From Possum Grape to the Big Peach via possumgrapepeach.wordpress.com

Meet my man pet. His name is Carlton. He likes when I scratch his head while he watches TV. Even he admits that he is spoiled.

So, not only am I adjusting to living in an extremely new place, but I am adjusting to living with Carlton. He is a hoot.

Several family members, friends, past coworkers, and past students have expressed interest and excitement about my move and want to know what life will be like for this very small town girl in the big city.

Maybe sharing my experiences will show people who hope to one day live in a city what it’s really like. Maybe it will show people who have always lived in a city what it’s like adjusting to things they have always been used to. Maybe it will serve a purpose I am not yet aware of, and possibly never will be.

Whatever the ultimate purpose, I hope to share my experiences here so that everyone can see what life is like adjusting from a town with no population sign to a city of millions.  I guess you could say I am a little Possum Grape in a very Big Peach.

From Possum Grape to the Big Peach via possumgrapepeach.wordpress.com

The Possum Grape Peach

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Life and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to From Possum Grape to the Big Peach

  1. YAY! I’m so happy to see this! I’ve been so curious about your transitioning, and I’ve been wanting to see some sites in Atlanta (since I’ve only been to the outskirts of the big city), but surprisingly, I learned a little about Possum Grape too. I remember how small it is. We used to meet my Grandpa there and play at the park (aka. the empty lot with a bench next to the gas station) since it was our half-way point.

    Like

    • Yes, you have been waiting patiently. It took me some time to figure out what I wanted to do with it and stuff. I am very glad you like the post. Hopefully, you can get out to Atlanta sometime so that I can show you some things…once I figure out where they are.
      I know the place you are talking about beside the gas station. That is actually in Bradford, which is the town closest to Possum Grape that I mentioned. The place has not changed a bit since you played there as a kid, except we did get a Dollar General by the freeway.

      Like

  2. Wow, that IS an interesting town name. I seem to hear of new towns and cities in Arkansas that I’ve never heard of ALL the time. And I’ve grown up here my entire life…

    Like

    • Haha! Yeah, it’s right down the road from Bald Knob. Between Toad Suck, Bald Knob, Weiner, Possum Grape, and others, I have no idea what people were thinking when they named towns in Arkansas. It certainly makes us stand out when asked where we’re from, though.
      Welcome to my blog, and thank you so much for reading and feedback.

      Like

  3. Carol says:

    I thought it was because the residents couldn’t agree on the name Possum or Grape–that’s what Wikipedia says, but your explanation makes more sense.

    Like

    • Thanks for the comment! Some people claim the origin story that Wikipedia does, but I think they say that to get a laugh. The thing about Wikipedia is that anyone can edit it. I once knew someone who edited the Possum Grape Wikipedia to say, “Home of (their name).” That’s why Wikipedia isn’t considered a reliable source in academia, but you can see that we Possum Grape people have a pretty good sense of humor. Haha!
      If you Google “Possum Grape” and look at images, you will see the plant of the same name with little berries on it. That is what I have always been told is the true origin of our town name because the plant is popular in the area for making things such as jam and wine. Thanks for reading!

      Like

  4. Amber Brinkley says:

    This was actually ironic for me to stumble across… I moved from Atlanta to Possum Grape when I was in 9th grade! Culture shock was an understatement! Ha

    Like

    • Sorry I am just seeing this. How funny! I would like to know some of the things you felt shock over. Every time I go back home, I just see so many differences. It’s like completely different worlds in different times to me. Thanks for reading!

      Like

  5. Shasta Jenks says:

    I also grew up in the town of possum grape, I left it about 16 years ago when I moved to Tulsa. It was an amazing place to grow up. Very close community.

    Like

    • It is a great place to grow up. I have deep roots there, and I am glad you enjoyed growing up there as well. Now, we get to spread our wings and show the world what PG people are made of. I wish you well in all you do. Thanks for reading!

      Like

Comment Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s