Monday, March 12, 2012

city, country, or town?

I've always said I was a city girl through and through. I've never gotten over the excitement, the newness around every corner, the anonymity without ever being alone, the feeling that there is always something To Do, and everyone is busy doing it.

But every once in awhile, I miss the quieter places I've lived in. I miss drinking coffee on my parents' front porch, and watching a mist settle over the hills in the distance. I miss walking down a tree-lined street, cherry blossoms falling at my feet. I miss the exhilaration of looking over the country from a high place and having it take my breath away.

Which makes me wonder...

J and I talk a lot about where we might live someday. We list city after city after city. And lately, the smaller cities, and even some towns, have made it into the discussion.

Because I like the idea of a tree-lined street, with a coffee shop and a bookstore within walking distance. I like the idea of a backyard just big enough for a garden and maybe some chickens. I like the idea of a nearby park for dog walking and baby strolling. I like the idea of breathing in morning air that just arrived on the clouds and hasn't yet been breathed in by anyone else.

Maybe we'll end up at the edge of a small city. Who knows? That's half the fun. But in my mind, it looks a little something like this:








City, country,  or town?

18 comments:

  1. I'm with you. I often think I could live in Europe, no problem. I love visiting cities, but could never live in a big city. After a weekend in New York, I feel like I'm on sensory overload and am always happy to return home :)

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  2. We did five years in London (only 2.5 of them together) before deciding out of the blue that a smaller city was what we wanted. We now live slap bang in the middle of a small city and LOVE it. We can walk everywhere, but there's still the buzz of a city. In London we could only afford to live a fair way out in the urban sprawl so even though where we live now is just teeny compared to London, our life actually feels more urban... except that in ten minutes we could be in a field with some cows or swimming in a gorgeous river!

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    1. Yes! This is exactly what I want. And I think England does this particularly well. Suburban sprawl tends to make the edges of small American cities a lot less scenic (in my opinion).

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  3. I'm like you and struggle with what I want. I love cities - I really dont see myself living in a suburb. but I can't live in NYC forever and don't think I want to. we think of moving to dc, which I grew up I near, because it's a manageable city and has lots of trees. but it's still very city. we used to live in Nashville and loved it - perfect city/country combo for us. but there's also Charlottesville, where my family now lives, which is much more of a town but we'd live near the center so we could walk to coffee shops, dinner, brunch, etc. i definitely miss the rolling hills of the south and their beauty, but I want to live a life where u dont have to drive everywhere for everything. so basically, I'm just confused as you, haha.

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    1. I've heard so many good things about small southern cities, but I can't stand the summer weather south of the Mason-Dixon line! =)

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  4. Those pictures look like where I am from and currently live. If you're in Boston, you should REALLY make a trip to Portsmouth, NH. I've lived in a few cities (Boston, Dublin, and Sydney) and after a few months, I always find myself missing my town style living, sunny tucked away apartment, and seasoned coffee shop owners who know you by name.

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    1. Amazing...I have a conference in Portsmouth at the beginning of May! Feels like fate...can't wait to explore.

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  5. That's a lovely time to visit Portsmouth! All of the restaurant and cafes have outdoor seating. If you need any recommendations, let me know!

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  6. I'm a city girl but love the idea of getting away to a quiet town, these images have me dreaming. My sister and her family live in NH so whenever we visit we get a lovely feel of a getaway!

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  7. I really love living in the city but there's something to be said about peace and quiet. What's great is that you can get away to either locations so it's really what you and your family love and can put up with

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  8. Oh, girl, these photos are giving me serious wanderlust!

    Hubby & I recently moved from a smaller area. We're enamored with the "city life" here in Boston, and I can't see that changing. I do, however, love the idea of some visiting some country vacation spots :)

    xo,
    Hannah
    www.chillairandperfume.blogspot.com

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  9. Gosh so much to think about! I LOVED living in Brookline, because I got my "town" fix, while still being seconds away from the city. But I also love where I am now because it's quiet and public transport excessible, for those times I need my "city" fix.

    I'd love to live in the country, but I like being near shops and restaurants, and close to neighbors too. A backyard is key though. And I'd like to be near a park or a pond. It's funny, I don't think a whole lot about this, but I think it's cause I really love where I am. I like to travel, but I'm pretty satisfied with my little place now and my simple "town" life. Easy to get out and easy to get in. For now, this is where I see myself and I"m pleased with it.

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  10. Those pics are stunning!
    I don't think I could be any better suited for a city than I am. Even with the noise, crowds, hustle and bustle, my heart feels at home surrounded by tall buildings and city life. It's weird but it's true. I feel most "at rest" in the midst of the chaos.

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  11. I'm from a somewhat small town and I want to live in a tiny little town SO bad! I think I was born in the wrong time, and I'm quite sure I was meant to be Laura Ingalls. My husband does NOT want to live is a small town. He grew up in a town with a population of 200, and he moved out of there as fast as he could. We now live in Phoenix, AZ... It's HUGE! I hope one day we'll find a town that's small enough for me and big enough for my husband.

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  12. I feel the pain! Living here in southwest VA I am so far away from anything city it kills me. Then again I also really loved where I grew up in the nice small town. We too talk about where to live and for now it is definitely a city. DC suberbs seem like the place to be and I hope to be in walking/biking distance to the metro. Philly has some great suburbs, too. It's so hard to want the best of each world!

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  13. All these cities look so idyllic. I've lived in a big city all my life (of course, I'm only seventeen so who knows), but I'm almost convinced that I want to move to a small town now. But how will I get on without public transit?!

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  14. I'm more of a small city girl myself. Places with a fun center and good restaurants/coffee shops, but you're unable to touch your house and your neighbors house at the same time.

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  15. I've lived in small city/countryside and big city. I prefer the big city, but it's always nice to break away to peace and quiet from time to time. :)

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Thanks for making me smile. =)