Here I am, sitting in my patio and enjoying the view. Our backyard is everything you can dream of – green, shaded, with lots of trees and all kinds of animals poking around now and then. I’ve even seen five baby foxes playing around chasing each other on the lawn one day. To top it all off we have our own creek that is so calming on a quite summer night. It is the most peaceful and wonderful place. It truly feels like home and sometimes I catch myself thinking that I don’t want to leave my house even for a minute. So here I am, wondering why did I ever want to move to a big city.
As much fun as big cities are, I think most of us are in love with the idea of it
I guess it is only natural to want something bigger. Those who run seem to have all the fun, right?! What else the big city is all about but running around, having fun, chasing the latest shows, fashions, restaurants, etc. A dream come true. Especially if you are a small town girl like myself.
I grew up in a small town in Russia. Growing up I was a busy kid. I took music lessons, drawing classes, even judo for couple of months. Until I almost broke my partner’s neck and decided that I probably was a little too competitive (not for my own good or my partner’s neck in that case) for that kind of sport. It was the best time of my life. My friends were around and I was occupied with something all the time. Then my parents decided to move. As you can imagine, it all goes down the hill from there. Well, not exactly. I won’t tell you all the details of my life during that period of time but I will tell you this – I was bored a lot. Although the town that we moved to was much bigger, there still wasn’t a lot to do. I craved excitement and dreamt of all the fun activities big city has to offer.
I moved to Des Moines in 2008. A definite improvement but Des Moines is not New York or Moscow, I thought. I loved the people and the city but it just wasn’t big enough for my dreams. I’ve decided to stay here for the time being but planned on move to New York as soon as I could. The year has passed and then another one. Finally, I’ve realized that I’ve been delaying for a reason. As much fun as big cities are, I think most of us are in love with the idea of it. The reality is much less exciting – higher living expenses, heavy traffic, lots of stress and not that many trees. That’s my number one priority. I have to have an easy access to nature. And not on the weekend when I have to be stuck in traffic for couple of hours before I can finally relax by the lake.
But don’t get me wrong. I am not against living in a big city. May be the hustle and bustle is your cup of tea. If it is what makes you happy, a big city is exactly were you should live. The point that I am trying to make here is that smaller cities like ours get underestimated a lot. Even by people who lives here. I myself was one of them for quite some time. I see the other side of the coin now and I want you to see it too.
Cities like Des Moines is the future. And maybe I talk big but why not? I definitely see why it can be. It is safe, beautiful and prosperous. We have great outdoors and the most wonderful people. The biggest value are the people that live here and the connection you feel with them. I haven’t felt that connection to a community since we moved from my little town. And it is something I don’t ever want to loose again.