Your excellent explanation of why you live in Mason reminds me of a recent telephone conversation with my son, who lives in San Diego. I was going to Eastland to visit some school friends and he was surprised that I still have friends there, fifty years later.
He asked, "Why do people stay in small towns, are they too scared to leave or don’t know any better?"
I answered, "Maybe some of both, but a great number of them do leave - they go away to college, to the military, or to the city for work, but many return to a small town to raise their children or to retire."
He thought a moment and then said, "I feel sorry for people in small towns who never see the world."
I replied, "That’s okay, Son, because they feel sorry for you."