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2004-10-23 23:46:00

I am in the town where I learned to be Andy, a small town in rural Indiana where life is paradise.

I have traveled the world and came home a different person, I have learned more about my home by seeing the world. As best I can tell Orland is a small settlement of German farmers, mixed in with a few Irish, Scandinavian and probably Dutch. A scattering of English, but for the most part it is an Americanized German farmer culture.

A farm culture is a different world than a city culture. Everyone in the town is Christian Protestant and probably could walk to church. There are three churches in the town and like a small German town the churches have bells, as last I remember they ring on Sunday morning.

I do not like to explain much about where I grow up because it sounds like bragging. I won the lottery of life.

Born in one of the nicest towns in the world.
Born to the best parents in the world.

Last night they all came to celebrate my birthday with me, we ate ice cream and cake, then my brother in laws and my father watch American Football, they all gave me cards and sang happy birthday.

I do not like to explain to people where I live when I meet people in other countries because it like a Disney movie. My niece is now a cheerleader for the school, like two of my sisters. Everyone makes too much money and drives them little mini-vans. My nephews and nieces are the who's who of children of the world, they are the future.

I am in Orland one of the best places to live on the planet.
Lots of smiling faces, and everyone knows my name.

I tell a story to travelers explaining how nice and great the people of Orland are, it goes like this...

I went over to the Orland Barber shop that is similar to Andy of Mayberry with the spinning candy stripe pole and 4-5 men sitting around getting haircuts more often than needed, while discussing world politics, the weather, and plans for the day.

The bring up the subject that a lot of Mexicans are moving into Orland. Like anyone in the USA they start to say that this is an invasion and although they do not come out and say it, they pretty much think this is not such a good thing. Then the get a little more serious, and they start to try their best to make a few insults about the Mexicans.

One man says,
"These Mexicans cannot take care of themselves, just the other day I had to go over and loan them some tools to fix their garage door. You would think they could fix a garage door."

The another pipes up with a second comment,
"Yea, a group of them broke down in the car the other day. I had to stop and jump their car, follow them back to town, and make sure they were safe. You would think they could do better."

Then everyone in the room nods their heads, and shake in disgust, I can tell what they mean, they are thinking...
"Geez, we have more people to help."

This is Orland, and very humorous to me. People of Orland complain about Mexicans, but they are so used to being good people that it never crossed their minds that they could have...
Not helped with the garage door.
Not stopped to help the broken down car.

So in a town where everyone is good father, and a good mother, they watch after their own, and anyone living in Orland is part of Orland. Yep, they complain, but like a father would grump around about giving the keys to the car, not a real good grump, just a way of bonding.

So in Orland everyone knows you name, and life is good, people go to church on Sunday and do their best to be good people. I was lucky to be born in the Orland, Indiana. USA.

People ask me how I can travel the world, the answer is simple in many ways, it is because I have a great family and was raised in Orland, Indiana. With this kind of background and some farmer common sense, I am able to see the world, and keep my head when all about me are losing theirs. All I have to do is remember my home, and hopefully try to spread the word, and explain what that paradise does exist.

Life is good!

So I suppose one day I will get married and bring home the girl to Orland, and live happily every after.

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