It wasn’t as big as Beverly Hills or Orange County. We weren’t city folk or country boys. We were just a small desert town that revolves around one of America’s biggest Air Force bases. Summers as hot as texas and Winters as cold as Wisconsin. The Antelope valley is blessed every day with the Santa Ana winds that blow the fine dirt and rocks across the empty fields in the late afternoon.
When I drive home on the weekends I think of all the memories I made in this town. All the football games I played, the people I met, and how many times I’ve moved in this little town. Moving to college I was excited to know that I would finally get out of this town. But when I was left alone at school it all came rushing at once. The feeling of ending a book in your life and starting a new one in Camarillo scared the hell out of me. Every thing I did from that point on I would remember doing in Camarillo. Not the old desert town that I came to know so well.
The smell of crisp cold air in the morning was replaced with the smell of Cilantro and rain. The empty desert fields with Joshua Trees was replaced by endless farms and early morning workers harvesting the crops. In the Antelope Valley you were surrounded by great mountains encompassing the town like you were in a bowl. The town was filled some of the most interesting people I have ever seen. Which in a way taught me what not to become. The crazy man shopping in walmart with no shirt and no shoes or the homeless people on every corner in Palmdale. It was clear that these “interesting” people had uniques stories of how they became the way they are but all boiled down to a simple drug addiction. It showed me what drugs can do to your life and I took that lesson to heart.
What I miss the most was Autumn In Lancaster. Football season in my town was what we did on friday nights. Everyone went to the games and you’d hear about that game for a week until the next friday. Seeing all my friends and family in the stands cheering me on while I struggle to catch my breath on 3rd down is the best feeling in the world. The roar of the crowd during a big play or the painful silence after a hard loss. The warmth of your girlfriend’s hugs after you score the game winning touchdown, or the firm but slightly painful handshake I got from my coach saying “Great job Collins.” I miss it all and I wish I could go back and time just to have those feelings again. What’s nice about the Antelope Valley is knowing that I had the opportunity to have all these emotions and feelings in the town I love the most. And I wouldn’t want it any other way.