Monday, August 23, 2010
love for the city -
(we pause for a moment to contemplate this, and side-track a bit from our series of ways to turn your house/apartment/condo/townhouse/rental/empty mansion into a home.)
Here is my city:
How can you not love it? The purple sky? I just...I melt every night at dusk...I adore it. But it's not the only reason I love it so much.
Recently, at my class reunion a couple of things got mentioned. Bear in mind, I grew up in quite a small town. And someone from my class mentioned they had visited Phoenix and found the area they drove through slightly...how shall I say this? menacing? threatening? But I was kind of a little bit amused because really they were just driving through a neighborhood which was a great place to buy the best tortillas in town. And they really weren't in any actual danger. It's just a poor neighborhood and an ethnic neighborhood, which is not always the same thing as a dangerous neighborhood. I'm not saying we don't have crime, or we don't have neighborhoods where I'm not keen to hang out on a Friday night. But by and large, I roam the city fear free.
Then in another conversation at the reunion someone questioned why I would want to live in a city - where the school districts are unreliable and the crime statistics are much higher and well...you get a lot less house for your money, etc. And I just - well, I didn't even try that hard to explain myself. I just said "Well...what can I say? I love it. I embrace it all - the good and the bad." And I got a weird look.
And what I meant was I embrace the Energy of a city.
A city is full of energy:
local bands at cool local venues....
large theaters that host your favorite comedians (went to see Eddie Izzard at the Orpheum last year and LOVED it...so MUCH)
Restaurants you crave and love and swear make your life just a smidge better - roasted corn and goat cheese pizza on sourdough...is life altering
Art venues everywhere
homeless guys are sad yes, but they add flavor, and some of them are very nice
having a membership to the phoenix art museum rules - they currently have a Cezanne exhibit that rocks
Dale Chihuly allowed us to marvel at his glass creations in the phoenix botanical gardens for a few months last year. They were amazing and wonderful and magic. (oh and he let us keep those green ones...how cool is that?)
Tempe town lake, the whole college scene, a whole other vibe, saw an art house movie here last week which made my week pretty much.
hispanic neighborhoods with alley street art are the bestest
Feeling like a little something out of the ordinary....roller derby baby...
retractable roof? air conditioned field...yep, we go all out...we had club seats, season tickets here for a number of years and if you're not into baseball, there's always the Suns, The Cardinals or Professional Hockey.
Scottsdale Art Walk every, every, every Thursday...and if you're lucky, you'll stop for some yummy Thai food at Mailees on Main
Feeling a bit more hipster than the slightly more sedate art crowd at Thursday art walk? Then First and Third Fridays downtown are for you.
This street artist is easily found all around town
don't want to drive out to Tempe? Take the light rail...quick and easy...
Sick of boring architecture? We have the cure....
pools? We have them in scores...
don't like this street mural? don't worry, it'll change soon enough...(I happen to like the themes going on here though)
Hello? Cheese sandwich that will change your life...asparagus salad that will restore your belief in humanity.
Who doesn't want to randomly spy these things when they drive about town? It's like a little treasure hunt between you and the street artist...
Is that a ridiculous paint job on a house? Yep. Do we care? Nope. It's PHOENIX.
Sak's 5th Avenue more your style? Have a spare $1000 burning a hole in your pocket and can't live without those Jimmy Choos? Right down the street from the crazy house painted green and pink.
Tired of the city? Want to get away? The whole gosh darned city if chock full of preserve and trails. I am literally nearly surrounded by trails and mountain preserves within mere minutes of the heart of it all. Because at some point, some city planner was a genius and didn't let them ruin the whole thing with housing developments.
Ballet Company? Yep got one of those.
Famous public sculptures? Absolutely.
Mesa center for the arts is awesome too - saw Alvin Ailey Dance Company there last year - AMAZING!
Wanna just be cool and ride your bike downtown and do some slam poetry...yeah, we're all about that.
And we have an excellent Symphony
And a cheese, tomato, basil and sea salt sandwich cooked on a flat bread that will blow your mind...
I've lived a lot of places...I've never seen more gorgeous sunsets in my life...
Don't think you'll make it Broadway or the West End to see that show you wanted to see? No worries, it will come to the Grady Gammage and be just as good.
Like a zoo? Well...we have 3. Big ones.
Still not enough theater for you...we have lots, and lots and lots more...honestly, I could make this post twice as long...I can think of dozens of other good things...
as much as I love Phoenix, I could also live in these places and be very very happy too:
Parts of LA
Cities can be absolutely lovely places to live...don't you think?