weekend in the 'burbs

We spent the weekend house & dog-sitting down in South County (for non-STL folks, it's like spending your weekend on another planet...or in Jersey-- & going there is similar to the process I go through when I go to Jersey -- inital dread followed by curiosity and amazement and come-upance).

We always freak out a little bit on our first night down there, when we try to figure out what we can do, other than come back in to the city, or go out to eat at an Applebees.

But we usually end up doing a lot of exploring, and surprise-surprise, tucked in amongst the never-ending sea of subdivisions are some really nice county parks. Who knew?! Each visit we find a few more. This weekend we found two new ones along bluffs on the Mississippi.

Speaking of the suburbs, Timothy Eagan writes in the NYTimes today about the fatal error that the Republican party has made in disparaging cities, touting them as full of high class elites who don't know real Americans or real American issues. As Eagan states, many non-urban parts of our country, as well as the general trend country-wide, is starting to resemble the diversity of our largest cities. In there lies a disconnect -- who is this "Real America"?

I've been wondering about something similar to this lately. I definitely feel that when rural or suburban folks think about liberal city-dwellers, they are thinking about people like me. But living in a city like St. Louis (or in a lot of other cities for that matter), you can look around and realize that there are a hell of a lot of people who are nothing like me. And I like that. That's why I live here, or in cities in general. Because I can find my niche, but I can also challenge my comfort zone-- including taking a surprisingly relaxing weekend in the 'burbs.

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