I had totally forgotten what a pleasure it is to be able to walk everywhere. When I lived in California, I was blocks away from shopping, dining, and the ocean, and it allowed me to live without a car for a few years. Everything I needed was a walk away or at most, a bus ride away. I took great pleasure in moving slowly enough to see the world go by as I moved through it – the people, the animals, the changing of leaves, the sounds – it was amazing. Then I moved, and I forgot all about it. My move brought me to the country and had to buy a car as I lived 7 miles away from town on roads that were often deeper than a mud bog, randomly requiring 4 wheel drive to even go to the end of my street. I lived out in the open, surrounded by a ton of open space which let me live simply, but one thing I definitely missed was the “life” I had gotten so used to watching on a daily basis. Whenever I needed to go anywhere I got in my car and missed out on moving slowly through life on foot, and after 6 days in Denver I have to say that I am glad to be back in the city.
I loved living in the country, and there is a lot I will miss about the peace and quiet and solitude. But because I had to use a car to get around, I missed out on a lot around me outside of my yard. I went speeding by the trees changing color, the guy on a bike, the family sitting in the park – I only had an interaction with these things in passing. But being back on foot has allowed me to rediscover walking on a daily basis to go to the grocery store, get something eat, pick up some dry cleaning or meet some friends for coffee. There is definitely something to be said for getting out of our cars and spending time “on the street”.
Is it a simpler life on foot in the city or in a car in the country? Not really sure…it’s just different. They both have their pluses and minuses. But I will say that being back on foot to do most anything is a fantastic way to see the world and experience it in a much more “real” way than being in car allows you to do. So in that way, I feel more connected in this busy metropolitan area than I did in the country. I feel more grounded, more in touch with how other people are doing, and like I am doing my part by staying out of my car.
But I sure do miss those dark skies and quiet nights…
We want pics of the new home!
Welcome to Colorado. I live about 60 miles from Denver and love it here.
I also live in a very urban environment and walked or took the bus to work for the past 8 years. I now work 10 mile away from home. I miss the urban work place. At least I can still walk to the post office, several great restaurants and a french bakery from my house.
Wow, this is so true. I grew up in a suburb, cars were need for everything… and though the surroundings were beautiful, we all just zipped around them… they passed us by.
I am closer to the city now and work in it. I take public transportation and walk. There’s no more “rushing”… the train gets in when it does… I have no control. I like that. It slows me down. And also, now I notice much more about nature… a well-potted plant on an apartment doorstep, the changing colors of the trees, the sky, the air I breathe while I’m walking about… and I must say I talk to far more people.
Definitely experiences you never get in the car.
Thanks for sharing this!
I can’t wait to see pic’s of your new place. I’m happy for you!
Being out of the car and walking around is fantastic. Your post reminds me of many conversations I’ve had with Logan. We’ve thought of moving to a more rural area. But I love the city and feeling so connected to people. 🙂
Best of luck unpacking and organizing all your stuff.
We felt very similar when we moved to this part of New Hampshire — but that’s because where we lived in Massachusetts had no buses, the grocery store was just out of range of walking, and I never felt safe biking on the roads because of the scary drivers and lack of shoulder. So that’s not to say that it’s only rural areas that are unfriendly to greener modes of transportation — sometimes all it takes is a poorly planned suburban neighborhood.
Good luck unpacking!
I live in a very small Pennsylvania town (in the “downtown”, as they say), and it reminds of when I lived in cities (Boston, Chicago, New York, and Philadelphia). I walk to the grocery store, pharmacy, post office, dollar store, etc. My favorite restaurant is 5 doors down the street. I know my neighbors and the storekeepers because I’m on foot, and we see each other often.
My neighborhood in Chicago felt like this small town does now because of that daily connection ……….. I even remember some of the older Russian emigrees in my neighborhood who loved to see me walk my babies and give me advice about dressing and raising them.
When I lived in a suburban development I was much more isolated.