I love being back in Monroe, I really do. I loved Chicago too. It was a great experience and I met some great people, lived in a great building, woke up happy every day and got to have a real winter. Love it all.
But there are some things about a small town that you just wouldn't ever see in any big city... no matter where you are. They are unique nuiances to a slower pace of life and I get a kick out of them.
The first one is the Stop Sign Stand-Off... everyone stops and waits for anyone else to go. They never want to be the first person to go. I think some people are taking defensive driving to a new extreme in some cases... wanting to make sure they aren't going to get hit, wanting to make sure the car is going to turn or go straight as indicated by the driver. But I like to think that it's also the overly politeness of the drivers, wanting the other person to have the option to go first if they'd like to... It's cute, it's quaint and it drives me nuts when I'm sitting there! I talk to other drivers all the time (I don't have road rage, just a running commentary) and I'll encourage them to drive with a mission. And I have no problem going, even out of turn, just because I know that sometimes you can sit there all day waiting for Farmer John to decide to mosey on through the intersection.
It's great. It's frustrating. It's something you never saw in Chicago and it's one of the reasons I'm glad to be home.