Ohio is all about waiting: waiting for the first snow and then waiting for it to go away. Waiting for the first hint of spring and then waiting for it to stop raining. Waiting for school to be out and vacation. Waiting for football season. Waiting for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Waiting for the ball to drop and waiting to wait. But I like it.

Ohio has four distinct seasons. In between each of those seasons are two perfect days. You almost don’t notice them because they are so pleasant. You have to look over your shoulder to realize they were there. I look out for them and I wait.

Most people who move to Ohio become acclimated pretty quickly. They might miss their brand of coffee or their bakery or deli. But they fall into line and march in step with the rest of us. People that leave Ohio never really do. You carry the Midwest in your back pocket along with your manners and self esteem. You can see them in the subway making eye contact and you can hear them in line at the grocery saying, “Thanks!”

I don’t think I’m leaving here anytime soon. More than likely, you’ll be coming here. We’ll show you around and buy you a cup of so-so coffee. You’ll find yourself wishing you had brought your jacket to the high school football game, but not needing it by the end of the night. You’ll find people waving at you for no reason and realize it was because you waved first. You’ll put down mulch and actually fertilize the roses. You’ll notice that the second lowest branch on the tree would be perfect for a swing and in fact there are two parallel scars in the bark where someone had that same idea fifteen years ago.

Ohio’s not perfect, but it’s good. And that’s perfect.

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