When you think of your hometown, what is the first thing you think of?
Probably not graffiti.
But as I wandered the streets of downtown Asheville with my baby sister today, I couldn't help but be swept away by some pretty amazing street art.
It is random and weird and funky and bright.
It is like my hometown. Unusual. Obstinately different. Deliberately weird.
Yep. This sparkling little artsy town, nestled in the Blue Ridge mountains,
is beautiful to me.
Not just because of the graffiti or the gorgeous handmade pottery. Not even because of the insanely picturesque views or famous landmarks or trendy restaurants.
I love Asheville because it is where I was born; stories from my childhood spill out every time I drive through town. I love Asheville because it is where I grew up, where I learned I could always, always be myself. I love Asheville because you don't feel pressure to fit in. Instead, it is cool to stand out.
Most of all, I love Asheville because it is where my hilarious, weird, funny, sparkling family lives.
So no matter how long I live in Greenville, Asheville will always be...
Now I know:
Asheville is a beautiful mess. And I wouldn't want to be from anywhere else.