Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

You know you’re in a small town when… July 1, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 6:30 AM
Tags: , , , , ,

I HONESTLY DID NOT THINK that small town folks were still so trusting. But, apparently I am wrong. Let me show you.

Example 1:

Mill, bikes

These bikes were left unattended and unlocked in a Morristown city park while the cyclists, a young couple and their son, walked across the street to the historic Morristown Feed Mill during a community celebration earlier this summer. They listened to music and hung out for awhile before returning to their unattended, unlocked and untouched bikes.

Example 2:

Mill, bike close-up

Now you’re probably thinking, Audrey, you just showed us those unattended, unlocked and untouched bikes. Yes, I did. But look closer at the contents of the bike basket. Do you see what I see? Yes, the young mom left her purse while she walked across the street to the mill.

Now, if I were the criminal type, instead of the photographing type, I could have stolen that purse right then and there.

Maybe the purse held nothing of value. But, if the contents are like the contents of my bag, plenty of valuable information and stuff I would not want stolen could be found therein.

Would you be so trusting?

Copyright 2013 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


13 Responses to “You know you’re in a small town when…”

  1. Amy Says:

    Well, the town I grew up in had a population of 197, and we always locked all our doors every night, closed the first-floor windows, locked the car, and would never have left a bike with a purse unattended. There were some unsavory types in this tiny town, Peeping Toms, and someone once tried to break into the house while we were in it. So, not much trust where I grew up.

  2. Yikes! That’s just stupid. Certainly, someone could swipe that purse. Or a kid could knock over the bike, spilling the purse contents in the process, and something could be lost. We don’t live in a vacuum; all kinds of people pass through all kinds of places. Unless the purse was full of dirty diapers, that young mother needs to think about possibilities just a little bit more. Judgmental of me? Perhaps. Have I ever had anything stolen from me? Yes. Do I trust people? Usually, but not always. Be smart, not oblivious.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      Yup, I don’t know what was in the purse and it could have been diapers, but I really do not know. I wouldn’t leave my bike unlocked and walk away…

  3. Jackie Says:

    Seems like a crazy thing to do but I guess they know their towns folk well enough to not worry. I know we never locked our house growing up in the country, but here in town, I hardly ever leave my garage door up….even when I’m home.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      But…there was a community celebration going on when I took this photo, meaning lots of strangers in town. Like me.

  4. treadlemusic Says:

    When we first moved here, we never even had keys for the house and the car keys didn’t leave the ignition! Over time, unfortunately, there have been episodes of rural theft so those things have changed. If you go in to our little town, however, bikes, etc are left unattended w/o a problem. Insurance companies are advising that coverage may be jeopardized if not properly secured. Ah, yes, a sign of this age!!! Sad.

  5. I am not that trusting. I see purses all the time unattended in the grocery or retail stores and then there are the fitting rooms too. I like to think I keep the bare minimum in my purse, but I am sure there is more in there than should be at times. Plus bikes are not inexpensive.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      Oh, yes, purses left unattended in shopping carts is a big one. If I had criminal intentions, I could have stolen many a purse from a cart.

  6. Neil Says:

    When I lived in North Dakota (within the last 5 years), it was not uncommon for people to leave their cars running in the parking lot during the winter season while they were shopping. Car theft was virtually unheard of; you could trust your fellow citizens. I doubt that it is something that most people would do outside of their own comfort zone.

    Folks in Morristown obviously trust their neighbors. Sounds like a great place to live!

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      Hmmmmm and you were not in a small town in North Dakota. Leaving a car running while shopping seems risky to me.

      A number of years back, my sister had her purse stolen from her unlocked vehicle while attending the North Morristown Fourth of July celebration. And that’s in the country.

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