Gretel Kauffman '16 | February 28, 2019
Sometime last year, I determined, somewhat impulsively, that I had no choice but to move to Idaho.
As a budding journalist, the Wild West seemed a far more exciting playground than my Boston home. I would have great adventures involving ranchers and horses and tumbleweeds, probably, while covering one of the most interesting statehouses around. And so I accepted a job offer, packed up my car and headed west to Twin Falls, a small city that overfloweth with scenic views, Pizza Huts and nearly enough friendly characters to fill them all.
But this is not a meditation on the politics of rural America, nor a self-righteous screed on the importance of journalism, nor a humorous montage of yours truly chasing cows through a potato field. It is, I regret to inform you, something far worse. This is the story of how I adopted a hamster.
“A hamster?” you may say, glancing warily downward to the end of this essay.
“A hamster?” my parents will surely bellow, glaring with disdain at the cat who somehow found its way into my South Bend apartment and has since become a permanent resident of their home.
To you and to them, I say, unapologetically: Yes.
You see, after the excitement of moving cross country faded, when the novelty of living across the street from Chick-fil-A and down the road from real cowboys wore off, I arrived at a startling realization. For the first time in my life I was entirely alone. And in a small town with few young transplants, the possibility of friendship felt elusive at best.
“Why don’t you go to the library?” my mother suggested. “There are nice young people at the library.”
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