"A sense of place is the sixth sense, an internal compass and map made by memory and spatial perception together.” —Rebecca Solnit
The little town where I come from lies deep in the heart of Fauquier County. Warrenton, Virginia is the place I call home. It is a junction of Route 15, Route 17, Route 29 and Route 211. In other words, in order for people to get to their various destinations all over the country, many pass by Warrenton, seeing it as just another exit off the highway. For me, there is an irreplaceable feeling that enters my body every time I take the Warrenton exit; Warrenton’s air is my breath of fresh air. Warrenton is a place of comfort and tradition with little to no change. Eight hours away, in a place I do not consider home, I know exactly why I’m genuinely attached to my home.
When I reminisce about home, I think of lazily rolling over in the morning, one eye still sleeping and the other gazing through the foggy mist of a fall morning. As I gently rub my other eye and awaken it, I see my horses grazing in the pasture beyond my house. I think about the comfort of going anywhere and everywhere in town, knowing just about everyone I see. I think about my friends and the fact that I’ve known all of them since I was five years old. I think about the Natural Market Place where I work. My passion for nutrition, sustainability and underdeveloped countries have all sprouted from this health food store. I’m lucky enough that my home away from home is five minutes away from my house. For the past nineteen years of my life I’ve seen the same two men at the corner coffee shop in old town on Saturday afternoons, reading their newspaper and laughing with each other. Just like these two men, the only part that has changed about Warrenton is time and age.
Warrenton is my little shell and wherever I go, I carry a small piece with me. Warrenton is not just another exit off the highway, but a town that welcomes people with a friendly face, a solid handshake and long windy roads that take you through some of the most beautiful horse country you will ever see. That is why I will always call Warrenton, Virginia my home.