ok, i don’t live IN atlanta…but close enough to call it home.
don’t get me wrong – i ADORE downtown. i spend plenty of time there. i LOVE cities. but i’m also a sucker for the winding roads and country scenes and the “homey” feel of tiny towns. so i live just far enough out from the heart of Atlanta to enjoy BOTH!
i guess it’s not just the ATL, but Georgia that i love so dearly. i love it’s diversity. i love it’s southern hospitality and charm. i love it’s weather – today is GORGEOUS! you get all four seasons here and they last as long as they are supposed to. and the scenery – GREEN GREEN GREEN! i need my trees and lakes and ponds and wooden fences.
lately there have been some things that make me so happy:
1 – Chick-Fil-A receipt days. Bring back your receipt and get everything on it for FREE! not to mention they put out a vase of fresh flowers on every table daily. classy fast food of the south.
2 – the heart of the town i live in can be summed up in one street – it has a library, city hall, beautiful little park, an ice cream place, two churches, a family owned cafe, an old lady salon, and a couple other little “shops”. there is a bank and auto shop across the way. i love this little strip. i can walk to it all easily from my house.
don’t get me wrong, i don’t live in the middle of nowhere. anything else i could possibly need is about a 10 minute drive away. it’s the best of both worlds. i pass cow pastures, fields, trees, po-dunk looking homes and even a huge southern mansion, and end up at a shopping mall complete with Victoria Secret, Ethan Allen, Macaroni Grill, Gap, Barnes & Noble, and seriously any place you could possibly need. WalMart, Target, and Sams Club are just down the road, too. along with everything else.
3 – the gym i go to knows me by name. and in my Zumba class, we have enough diversity that it’s so full of flavor! one lady last night was signing in her friend and shouts out across the room, “JJ HONEY, how you be spellin’ yo’ LAST NAME?!” it was so loud everybody got quiet. then from across the room “JJ” shouted back how to spell it. the way people talk just make me smile.
4 – people. doesn’t matter if you know a person – they smile, wave, and say “hey!” or “how yah doin’?!” even if you don’t know them from adam! i especially like the handful of strangers that go walking every morning – i don’t know a thing about them, but i feel like we’re friends because we wave and smile to each other every day on my way to work.
5 – Waffle House. open 24/7. better than any Denny’s or IHOP. and the environment makes it all that much better.
6 – Little Five Points. it’s like little bohemia. music venues. book stores. vintage shops. great food. the most interesting of people. full of photo opps.
7 – Fernbank Museum’s IMAX theater. educational and incredible. enough said. i love it!
8 – Papi’s Cuban Grill downtown. i could eat there everyday. and around the corner is the fabulous Fox Theater!
9 – Concerts in Atlanta. concerts in parks. cheap shows every weekend. and i love love love the smaller venues – Vinyl, Center Stage, the Loft, the Tabernacle. (the Masquerade for when i was in high school and more into the punk/rock scene). other venues – Smith’s Olde Bar. Decatur – Eddie’s Attic – SWEET POTATO FRIES! mmmm.
10 – the classy homeless trumpet player. i swear i see him every time i’m downtown. usually he’s down the corner from the Fox. he’s got talent.
11 – parks. georgia has so many beautiful parks! i love picnics or walks in the park.
12 – i’ve already mentioned diversity. but you go to the right parts of town, you really can find little Korea and mini Latin America. Caribbean too. It’s great for eating out! or shopping at all the international markets. so great!
12 – stone mountain. hiking to the top never gets old. SO beautiful! and all the things to do in the park around it. after a day there and an evening watching the laser show. i just leave thinking “God bless the U.S.A.!!”
and just some other things that make this city so great – Centennial Olympic Park, The Coca-cola factory, Turner Field, the GA Aquarium (only THE largest)….
my “i love georgia” list could go on forever.
you don’t even have to go “downtown” to find it all. this weekend, i’m headed to the north georgia mountains. It’s October – time for apple everything!
I spent my years in Utah for school. I’ve visited Arizona plentyplenty. I used to live in Florida. Texas – spent enough time there to not want to stay too long. as far as living…nothing compares to Georgia. home sweet home.