Are You a City Person or a Country Person at Heart?

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While reading the second From Left to Write Book Club selection for November, I found I was spending a lot of time reminiscing about the two years I lived in Boston.

In the book, Brian, the protagonist, is trying to find his place (and space) with a new family – a fiancee, her two daughters, cats, dogs, frogs, rabbits, and a very bossy rooster named Buddy – in suburbia while he has spent his entire life living in the concrete jungle.

He asks himself how much is he willing to “give up” for the woman he loves. Throughout the book, Brian lovingly describes the streets, the sights, and the sounds of Boston quite vividly.

He strolls down Newbury Avenue. He takes his dog for a walk in the Public Garden. He grabs a bite to eat in the North End.

I cannot help but remember the times I strolled down Newbury Avenue or walked through the Public Garden, or ate yummy Italian at a tiny restaurant in the North End and then went for dessert at Modern Bakery.

My favorite thing to do when friends came to visit was to walk the Freedom Trail and show others all of the wonderful historical sites in Boston. Walking that trail never got old, no matter how many times I did it.

Boston is such a beautiful city steeped in history, art, and culture.

I remember those times fondly and tell tales of living in Bean Town regularly. My most favorite and rewarding job was while I lived there. People always wonder if I miss living there and if I want to move back some day, and my answer is a very quick and conviction filled

ABSOLUTELY NOT!

See Boston is a big city. A very big city. There are tons of people there, walking around, working, living their lives, breathing my air and making it hot. There are lots of cars driving and honking and filling the air with the smell of exhaust.

There is so. much. noise.

Never any silence.

Even in the dead of night when most of the people are slumbering the relentless cooing of the resident pigeon population kept me up nights.

I am not a “city girl.” I grew up in hardcore suburbia where your neighbors were within sight limits, but not within sound limits. I remember missing the sight of grass so much that I found the one small square of grass on Northeastern University’s campus, and sat on it on my lunch break often. I got a lot of weird stares, but I didn’t care. I was a “country girl” and needed to feel a connection to nature.

When it was time to move on I happily packed up my belongings and moved to a very rural part of New Hampshire where we had groundhogs and chipmunks and routinely saw deer in our backyard. There were even a few sightings of a local bear and moose.

I breathed in a deep breath of clean smelling air and listened to the stillness of the land. I had acres of grass to sit on and felt at peace.

So, are you a city person or a country person at heart?

This post was inspired by Buddy: How a Rooster Made Me a Man, a memoir by Brian McGrogry. When Brian his bachelor life to move to suburbia and join his girlfriend with her two young daughters, he had no idea he needed to win over their rooster too. Join From Left to Write on November 21 as we discuss Buddy: How a Rooster Made Me a Man.  As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.

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11 thoughts on “Are You a City Person or a Country Person at Heart?

  1. I am 100% city girl, there is an energy in the air that is so exciting. San Diego isn’t enough city for me even. The surburbs make me nervous, its to quiet.

  2. I know I’m happiest when the city is within driving distance, but I don’t like always being downtown and I hate the constant traffic. As much as I like the country, I am most at home in suburbia. I have grass, neighbors that aren’t right next to me, shopping is nearby, and the traffic comes and goes depending on the time of day. I suppose I like the balance between the two extremes best.

    • I agree, Brooke. The place I was happiest was when I lived in Illinois. I lived in the suburbs close to a lots of corn fields, but less than 2 hours away from Chicago. So, if I wanted to see the stars I could, but if I wanted to catch a museum exhibit or have a fancy dinner I was a quick drive to the Windy City. Best of both worlds, in my opinion.

  3. I hear ya on the silence thing! I’m a country girl but I’d like to move closer to town so I don’t have to fast for 2hrs before getting my blood drawn for my diabetic checkups and so I could more easily teach sewing lessons. Maybe what I’m describing is suburbia?

  4. Pingback: Book Club Day: Buddy: How a Rooster Made Me a Family Man

  5. I used to be a city girl, and assumed I always would be… But then I moved to the country, and I will definitely not be going back. Even visiting the city gives me anxiety. Give me some trails and trees and mountains and lakes everyday!

  6. Born and raised in West Roxbury, one of Boston’s neighborhoods, I would never go back. Fortunately, we live within commuting distance so we can take advantage of what the city has to offer- theatre, museums,shopping, historical sites and one or two sports teams, while enjoying the space and lifestyle of the suburbs.
    While we didn’t have the pigeons where I lived, we have nightly howling and yapping of coyotes, here in the ‘burbs.

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