Growing up in modern-day central Oklahoma, I forget that some misinformed outsiders still envision Oklahoma as a primitive prairie land with no running water, dotted with Sooner settlements and teepees… plagued by dust storms that fill the air with swirling red dirt that stings the eyes… epic battles between cowboys and Indians, complete with wild horses running rampant amongst pistol bullets and arrow fire… whiskey-drunk, trigger-happy cowboys in creaky old saloons… ok, ok, I understand the urge to get carried away and daydream about the Oklahoma presented in old Western films.
In reality, I live a thoroughly modern life. The land is flat, that is true. It’s crazy hot here in the summer, cold in the winter, and we get tornadoes during the in-between seasons. We have the most amazing sunsets and the friendliest of residents, not to mention an incredibly low cost of living. Hello, $400 rent for a spacious old apartment with 12-foot ceilings and large windows!
Only outside of the cities do you come across settings that almost support the scenes in old Western movies, like ranches at sunset, horses on family land, and old houses that look like worn-down homesteads from the 1800s. Here are a few photos I’ve taken over the past couple of months when I ventured outside of the metro area and headed for Stillwater and Woodward:
Honestly, I could live elsewhere, but I’ll always fiercely defend my home state. I’ve lived in Oklahoma my entire life, save for an enchanting semester spent in Bordeaux, France. While I was there, I missed just a few things about Oklahoma: the red dirt, the electrically-charged thunderstorms, and my family and friends. I do feel more grounded with my feet on red earth… but if I were offered a return trip to France, I’d hop on a plane to Paris in a heartbeat.