Friday, October 17, 2003

Finding that Zip

Anne had an entry that really spoke to how I feel about Jamestown and traveling at times.

I enjoy living here. I like going out or going shopping and seeing people I know. Striking up quick conversations and then carrying on. It can be a burden sometimes, especially at age 26 (almost 27), when you're out having a drink or two and you don't want to seem disorderly, but overall it's comforting. You don't feel quite as alone as you might in a bigger city.

On the downside, this area just doesn't have that "zip" that Anne refers to. Maybe it comes from growing up in Rochester and knowing all the little nooks and crannies. Rochester has that zip for me. It's the zip of knowing all the places to go to find that kind of magic. That sense of synergy with your environment. I've tried to find those places here and other places I've lived like Cleveland and Buffalo. Cleveland has a few of those places. Buffalo really doesn't. Here? I get fleeting glimpses or feelings of zip during the Autumn. It comes from seeing the hillsides become washed with color. It's the double-rainbows I see after a rainstorm as I drive home from work on I-86. It's the fierce winds that blow the pine trees around in the backyard. Those are moments that make it okay. But I still miss the other material things. I miss coffee shops with that cool, funky vibe. I miss the ease of seeing independent films. I miss having every big box store, plus much cooler boutiques available for shopping when I need to find gifts. I miss having multiple Wegman's to choose from. I miss having a pier on a better Great Lake to wander on and have my hair get messed up by the wind and waves. It's still home in many ways, but it isn't. I don't have a real home there anymore other than my parent's house and most of my friends have moved away from there.

I've spent over four years making this county my home. It's still rough around the edges and I still have the sense that I won't stay here. I would miss it if I left, but that comes with any place where you spend good times.

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