Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Hillbilly inadequacies and urbane reflections

So I will be the first to admit that in often struggle the fact the I have never really had a lot of exposure to urban environment. I mean, when I went to college in KY, my college town had 10 thousand people and a walmart supercenter. Thought that it was big city living.

Then I returned to the simple life of rural NC. It really was like green acres. Then I went to Manhattan, KS. A Division 1 college town with 50,000 people, with a bonafide bar district, expensive rent, and multiple bike shops. This I thought, was big city living.

Then I moved to Omaha, well just outside of Omaha. Close enough that I could commune with the urban outdoors men (homeless people) but far enough away that what happened on 30th and (insert any north Omaha st) did not affect me.

I commented to Noah, once as we were riding from downtown O, that whenever I was around urban downtown settings, no matter how long I had been removed from western NC, I still felt like a hick.

Like a serious hick, dueling banjos, "My Name is Earl" kind of inadequacies.

Its my cross to bear.

But I can see why some folks really dig living in urban environments. Each day I walk about a mile to and from my downtown bus stop to the Capitol complex. It constantly amazes me how many people are milling around, smoking, sipping things out of paper bags, talking in foreign languages, being so high that they physically cannot talk to the police, all before 8 am. It is pretty wild. I thought that it might be intimidating, but for the most part people just mind their own business.

I am pretty stoked about the people that I work with in the Dept of Ag. One of the guys that I will spend half my time with races CX, and the Hydrologist I will work with mountain bikes and lived in ID until a few months ago.

Its kind of strange to all of the sudden be surrounded by people at work that I actually enjoy being around.

The bus experience was been pretty awesome. There is a express line pickup about 2 miles from our condo, and it takes me from Shoreview to downtown St. Paul in less than 25 minutes. You cannot drive a car and get to where I work any faster than on a bus. If traffic slows or stops, the express buses will drive on the shoulder. I am not talking about poking along at 35 mph. I mean barreling past stopped traffic on I35 doing 65mph. There simply is no better way to get across town at rush hour.

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