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Old 06-25-2008, 01:25 PM
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What do you mean by 'the rest of America'. Much of the US lives in suburban and urban areas, not just New York and LA.
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Old 06-25-2008, 04:39 PM
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im the other way around. i grew up in the burbs for the most part and now i think small towns are way too boring, considering that we had just about any store you would want up in the burbs. i love detroit and oakland county especially. i dont like living in small towns.. overwhelming with nothing to do!
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Old 06-25-2008, 09:12 PM
Location: The City of St. Louis
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I grew up in a very small town in Missouri (around 2,000 people) and moved to Washington, DC. First 2 weeks were rough, I felt out of place and the traffic was hard to get used to. Also all of the ethnic diversity was a big change. After that first 2 weeks I figured out how to drive in the traffic and felt fine there. People were very unfriendly (no one made eye contact and everyone just walked around in their own world), although the people I worked with were all very nice. I had 4 years of college, although also in a small town of around 16,000, before moving to DC, going straight there from high school would have been a huge culture shock. Austin, TX where I live now is much, much friendlier, but I do miss the sheer amount of things to do in the DC area.

As far as the comment about many urbanites / suburbanites not understanding how things work in the rest of America, I agree. A lot of people have absolutley no idea what it is like to live in a rural area, and look down on the people, many of who provide them with food and all of the other necessary materials for life (wood, mined ore, ect). Granted I knew a LOT of ignorant white trash growing up, but there is ignorance in both places.

One thing I will say though...I still don't understand why anyone would sit in traffic for 2 plus hours a day commuting just to afford a bigger house, or a house at all. Living your life is more important than a few hundred extra square feet IMO.
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Old 06-25-2008, 09:32 PM
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There is a difference between not knowing and looking down. I'm sure that most rural people don't really know what it is like to not own a car and take the 'el'/subway to get to wherever one wants to go as I do, and have done for most of my adult life, just as I have no clue what it is like to grow up on a farm. Just because people have difference life experiences doesn't mean those people automatically look down on other people. Are there urban people who look down on rural people, of course, but there are plenty of rural people who dismiss us urbanites as being clueless and not mattering either (some even in this thread).

OA 5599 - I do agree with you there, I never understood insane commutes. I could probably move out to the suburbs and get more space for my money, but quite frankly, I prefer living close to where I work and play, even if that means I sacrifice space to do so, the sanity that it brings is worth every square foot I've lost.
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Old 06-26-2008, 12:40 AM
Location: NC/SC Border Patrol
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The thing I like most about the country is the safety factor. Or maybe I should say used to be the safety factor. I am not sure anywhere in America is safe anymore. When our children were in school, we did not bother locking our sliding glass door. We had a fenced in sheep dog and if anyone wanted to get past him, they were welcome. It is also nice to have a larger area where you are in control of what goes on there. Our children could play inside the 3/4 acre fenced area and no one else had any reason to be around them and the sheep dog protected them. It is hard to have safe areas in the city.

You are right that we do not know how to live without a car. My dh and I have two setting in the three parking spaces of our driveway. When our children were home, sometimes it would be four and we had to juggle. With these gas prices, we may end up with bicycles or golf carts. I think people in the city probably do more walking than we do on a daily basis.

I did fine in Denver. We lived near Washington Park. My daughter had her first birthday there and I used the stroller so much that I wore the tires down to where the brakes would not work anymore. My dh took the car every day to the school he was attending and I walked to the grocery store, church, park, dentist, and doctor and just explored the area. I was beginning to learn to us the bus. That was really strange to me. I had never used the bus before, except school bus, for transportation. I had to learn how to transfer from one to another and manage carrying packages as well as a very healthy good sized baby. I guess we get spoiled having a car setting there ready for us all the time. That part of living in the country is easier.
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Old 06-26-2008, 06:42 AM
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Oh, there are absolutely easier and more difficult aspects to both lifestyles and ultimately it comes down to what one prefers and what one is used to. I come from a long line of urbanites and suburbanites (my grandfather was from nyc, mom from Boston, etc) so that is what I'm used to. I first rode a city train by myself when I was 12 years old and it has never been a big deal to me (my mom reports taking the city bus in Boston when she was six years old which seems rather surprising to me). I also walk, a lot.

However, I do worry about the kids in my neighborhood, just last summer a teenager a block away from me was killed because of gang activity in a park, and a lot of the kids I see play in the street or in the alley, and there are lots of cars around so I worry about their safety in that regard too. I also remember none too fondly the childhood park of my youth being taken over on occasion by an unpleasant element and having to find somewhere else to play when violence became an issue. I currently don't have kids, if I did, I'd have to think long and hard about how and where I'd raise them. But at the same time, I'll admit, I'd be a bit nervous about moving to a small town, I don't know how I'd fit in or if I'd like it, or feel isolated and depressed. I lived in a small college town for a bit when I was younger and went to school, and while I eventually grew to enjoy the experience and learned a lot from it, it was a rough transition, and when the opportunity came to move back to a large city, I couldn't pack fast enough.

On the other hand, I grew up going to all of the museums, to cultural events, knowing kids from all over the world and hearing all myriad of languages spoken as first languages by my friends parents. However, I was an adult before I ever rode a horse, I've never fished, and am still often mocked by my friends with more rural backgrounds whenever we get together and take forays out into the country or start sharing childhood stories and I am comfortable enough to ask my stupid questions.
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Old 09-18-2008, 08:36 PM
144 posts, read 499,457 times
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What country folks are missing in so called "life skills" (as defined by the original poster), I was very surprised to find they know in other things. I am using my husbands family as my example. His family is country as they come. Every winter, we have an ice storm (atleast one) and lose our power for a week or more at a time. Here in my town (small city-100,000ish people) the world basically ends. You freeze. You can't get any groceries because everything is sold out.

My husbands family, it's like no big deal to them. They have food stocked up all the time anyway. Houses run off wood burning stoves (as opposed to my wimpy fireplace that won't even warm the living room), everyone has an old four wheel drive. Every winter while I am freezing my butt off, I am jealous that I grew up a city girl, and did not learn any of their country folk survival skills. My husband, of course, didn't pick up any of those skills either.
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Old 09-18-2008, 10:23 PM
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Grew up in Iowa. LOVED growing up there, and wouldn't trade it for anything for even a second. Been to all 50 states and never once flinched that I grew up in the best situation I ever could have.

I go back 4 times a year and I am like a kid in a candy store each time. I'm 29, but going "back home" is the most relaxing, cultured, educated experience. It might be Iowa, but damn, those people know a lot and are on top of their game.

That said - I moved to Chicago at 22 years old, and after about 8 seconds here I knew I was a big city guy, I was completely at home and comfortable with where I was, and I knew that as much as I loved growing up in a town in Iowa, personally, I was never going back.

So that's my situation. I knew the day I moved here that I'd found myself.
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Old 09-18-2008, 10:25 PM
Location: Upstate NY native, now living in Houston
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To the OP .... yes. I grew up in a small town in NY. Now I am living in Houston. Get. me. out. of. here. now. lol
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Old 09-19-2008, 01:16 PM
Location: Chicago
526 posts, read 932,954 times
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alot of people are right, the majortiy of NYC, Chicago, L.A. do not understand small town. Ifor one, whom live in Chicago do not understand small town i loathe the fact of living miles or blocks away from neighboors, at times i wish i did but hey thats big city life for ya. i guess it is just they enviroment and attitude that we have and were raised
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