If you had asked me when I was 10 if I would ever live downtown, I would have been taken aback, if not horrified. Live downtown? People actually live downtown?
I think that living in Clifton while David and I attended classes at UC toughened me up a bit. Plenty of panhandlers there, and the Hughes high school thug wannabes could seem menacing at times. We learned to perfect the rebuff of “Sorry. I don’t carry any cash.”
But after the cat caught his fifth mouse, and our neighbor’s toilet upstairs began leaking through the ceiling, (clean water, our landlord claimed, surely not a big deal) our time in our cheap Clifton hodgepodge of an apartment had come to an end.
We moved to East Walnut hills, an outpost of the “Hyde park near” area. On the front lines of the gentrification effort on Woodburn, we did begin to feel a little isolated. We also were down the street from a fire station, which was extremely noisy. But at least we had a dishwasher; and no mice.
Downtown still remained a labyrinth of one way streets, shrouded in mystery. I was thrown into the deep end and forced to learn my way around when I got a job downtown close to Third Street. I cautiously explored around the office, in block by block sections. Eventually, I learned my way around, for the most part. I started Cincinnati Nomerati and began reviewing restaurants, including some around my workplace.
But live downtown? Nah, that was not in the plan. At least, not until we actually became friends with some downtowners and local bloggers, the 5chw4r7z’s. They are very proud downtowners and adore it. They are very emphatic about how much they love their condo and the location.
So when David mentioned maybe moving downtown from our last place to a bigger apartment, I jumped on it. Within three days, I’d found a place and we were close to signing a lease. I know it seems fast—but that’s just how I roll with things I really want to do. I planned our whole wedding in 28 days.
So far, we love living downtown. I feel a lot more connected to the city and the many unique, creative and talented bloggers that we’ve become friends with. I’m able to take the skywalk to work and come home at lunch. Kitty and I watch the pigeons out the big windows and the hipsters smoking outside of FB’s. We have a dishwasher and more space, no mice and no fire trucks.
It’s been a long journey, both in actual location and in our view of Cincinnati as a city. I can honestly say I feel proud to be a part of it. We’ll see you downtown.
December 30th, 2007