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Tuesday, February 15, 2011

I'm a City Gal

Every week religiously I watch Selling New York on HGTV, as I've said before I love the channel I can spend whole Saturdays watching design and home shows. I love Selling New York, not that I'm a New Yorker or even want to be a New Yorker I just love all the plush homes they show on it. I love that they celebrate that city, but even more they celebrate the concept of the city. I'm a city gal at heart, I really am. I love the city, I live 20 blocks away from downtown Seattle and I love my neighborhood. Yes, there is a premium on space and the rent is higher and there's not a lot of parking but I love living near the city. Nothing against people who live in suburbs but there is just something about them I find empty, heartless and cold. People there are to themselves, they are private and exclusionary in suburbs and they all kind of look alike. Neighborhoods built around a shopping outlet, where's the heart in that? The city to me is where it's at, Seattle is a vibrant town with great city neighborhoods and a dynamic hub in downtown. My best friend lives downtown in a apartment the size of a Kimora Lee Simmons' closet but she loves being able to walk out her door and get anywhere via her feet. I lived downtown many years ago and I found everything about it to my liking. I like the diversity of cities, it's diverse in every way, the people, the food, the shopping, and the entertainment just gives you a bit of everything. There are parks all around Seattle, I have at least six parks within walking distance of my apartment. One is right across the street and yes the city can be a bit more dangerous. But no more dangerous than the suburban neighbor who's killed his wife and family and cut them up and all the shock of neighbors saying on the news 'but they were such a quiet, nice family', there was a reason they were quiet. In the city, you can't stay too unseen, most of the folks in my neighborhood I know their business especially if the cops show up. I have to say, I find that soothing at least I know who to look out for.

As a child I always lived pretty close to the city and my mother always let us know it was there for us, she introduced us to it as children so I was always a proud city-dweller when I lived in Houston. Now when I go back everyone lives in suburbs so far away, it takes 3 hours in traffic to get to them to enjoy that expensive home. I like that I'm pretty much 20 minutes from anywhere that matters. I always worked downtown as a paralegal and it was nice to be home by 5:30 pm so I could actually enjoy my home and my family. Matt always lived in the suburbs and I think has some desire to move back, I don't share that desire but right now we enjoy living in the city. I foresee a loud discussion going on regarding moving to some suburb with no spirit or vitality. I love that I can make it to the Cinerama movie theater downtown this week to meet my friend so we can see 'Breakfast at Tiffany's' then have lunch, hit a great bar on Capitol Hill, go the art museum without it being an all day adventure, catch the ferry to Bainbridge Island and be back home in time to see Star Trek at 8:00 pm on BBC America. I love the city and city dwellers have something to be proud of, you are the innovators, you create progress, and you celebrate diversity so hold your head up high city folk, it's the other people that may be making life harder for you. There's a wonderful book out about that celebrates the city and the folks who call it home it's Triumph of the City: How Our Greatest Invention Makes Us Richer, Smarter, Greener, Healthier, and Happier by Edward Glaeser. I'm looking to buy it soon, he was interviewed on 'The Daily Show with John Stewart' last night and he made me dang proud to be a city gal and if you love the city and live in it, you'll be proud too. Cities are also absolutely gorgeous, check out that photo of Seattle at night, no podunk suburb or town can claim that view. All hail, the city folk.

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  1. Lol its a bit different when i lived in Johannesburg, Hillbrow... I hated it. Like the worst area in the city..

    I like living in the city here though.. Beautiful cities with nice medieval architecture, good public transportation and lots of stores to shop in..

  2. Nkosazana, oh when I mentioned cities it was in reference to American cities. This is just a commentary on the long riff between the city dweller and the country folk. Each thinking the other is bringing this country down, actually city people got a bad rep here. And country folk, Mr and Mrs. Heartland are celebrated like folk heroes, ugh! It gets old. I'm just saying I'm proud to be a city dweller in America as I'm sure you are in Europe. In many places cities can dicey but I also think even in some crazy places, they can create a lot of vibrancy and bring forth some great ideas and movements.