Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Where do you live?

I'd love to hear a little bit about the demographic of the Fictionista readers. Where do you live, and what are some cool features about your city/region?

I live in Cleveland--we have some great recreational activities available here. I love the Cleveland Museum of Art, not to mention Severance Hall (where the Cleveland Orchestra performs). We also have a natural history museum, a science museum, a botanical garden, and much more.

Also, our metroparks are very pretty and abundantly available. They have great walking areas, playgrounds, and nice expanses of brilliant green grass to have picnics or play frisbee.

Cleveland has a ton of great restaurants, too--which I love, because I'm a total foodie. And, of course, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention The Rock-n-Roll Hall of Fame!!

Here are some photos I took of downtown Cleveland a few years ago--I love wandering around and taking pics:

Your turn--tell me what city/region you're in, and a few key features in your area that you enjoy! Well, hopefully you enjoy it, anyway. LOL


  1. You guys have the Rock and Roll hall of fame!!

    I actually LIVE in Green Harbor, MA most of the time. I was spending 2/3 days a week in Cambridge, but lately not so much.

    Boston-- well, Boston has everything cool and dreamy. Fenway, House of Blues, AMAZING restaurants, museums, and places to hang out. Freedom Trail, Old North Church, Copley, Bunker Hill, you name it.

    Green Harbor has a harbor. A cute one. A river that might change its geography if we get a storm (seriously). We have the original Governor's house-- like, the first one in this country! We have Daniel Webster's estate (I live on part of it), his original house and law offices. We have the first school house built in town, one of the first in the US ever. We have The Green Harbor General Store-- also known as "The Genny." And Steve Carell has a house here... like just down the way.

    Green Harbor is actually a village that is part of Marshfield, but we really like being our own community and only begrudgingly belong to the town. Cuz we're just cooler.

    <-- Kickin' it 02041 style, baby!

  2. LOL! that's so cool, Chrissy. I used to live in MA. It's so pretty up there--I love New England. :D

  3. I live in Washington (state) about an hour from sparkly vampires. Other than that, it's I love it here. My town is nestled between the Straits of Juan de Fuca and the Olympic Mountains. And, I can see Canada from my house.

  4. I used to live in Erie and have been to Cleveland more time than I can count. My little sis lives there now, in the area at least.
    I moved to a small town called Elizabeth City, we are less than hour from OBX and Virginia Beach. And in half a day we could be in the mountains. The climate here is not my favorite, but we are spoiled with warm temperatures more often than not.

  5. I'm a couple hours south of you, smack in the middle of Ohio farming country. Everywhere you go is corn and bean and wheat fields. (Half of the world's corn and beans are grown in Ohio and Indiana, BTW) The fields even sneak into the edges of the cities, and even inside the city/town limits!

    There are tons of "ghost" towns, which still show up on maps, although when you "drive through" them, you notice nothing more than a crossroads with 4-8 houses packed closely together, instead of sitting on 2-5 acres like most non-farm houses are.

    The roads are mostly laid out on a mile by mile grid, lined on a side or two with some 2-5 acre parcels with houses and filled in otherwise with crops. Many of them have huge barns, built with what is now the oldest wood in the country. Unfortunately, most of them are falling down from the outside in because no one has the $30,000 it costs to re-paint them, on top of government-mandated lead-paint clean-up costs (which are $10,000, easily). So instead of that cancer-causing paint getting covered up with fresh, it's left to fall and disintegrate into the ground with the barns, which are quickly-disappearing icons of American history. Meanwhile, farmers mortgage everything they've got to put up an ugly metal barn to house their machinery, and the government thinks their regulations have helped the world. It's sad.

    There are small towns, ranging from 3-20 stoplights dotted here and there, usually about 1/2 hour when you have to go shopping for groceries, you call it "going to town" and when you want to go shopping-shopping you call it "going to Mansfield" or "going to Columbus" because no one would know what you meant if you just said you were going shopping. BTW...for most people, that's a 45 minute to hour-and-a-half drive.

    But I love it here. I love the gardens that you see growing behind every third house (including mine). I love to watch the corn rows zip and unzip as I watch down them from the speed of my car. I love to watch the wind ripple across the bean fields like a velvet sea of green. I love the even green-ness of the winter wheat when it comes to life in the spring. And I love the way the fields remind you that humans are really a very small part of something much bigger beyond our control...something wild and beautiful.

  6. I'm in Oshkosh Wisconsin - about an hour south of Green Bay (go Packers!) an hour north of Milwaukee (go Brewers!) and an hour north east of Madison (go Badgers!)

    I never meant to stay here, I grew up in Milwaukee, and planned on going to college, then moving to Chicago/ Austin (Tx) or Portland.
    But lo - I found a boy, found a job, and found that cost of life in my mid sized college town is really inexpensive.

    But... I still dream of a bigger city. Now that bigger city is Paris, Munich or Amsterdam though. Guess my dreams are growing international.

  7. Oooooh thanks for sharing your cities, everyone!!

  8. I live on the Spacecoast of Florida. That means we get to do cool things like watch the shuttle launches or drive to Disney or Universal Studios for the day on a moments notice. There are other things to do like go to the beach or watches races at Daytona or take in a few spring training ball games, but sometimes we forgot all that stuff is so close!

  9. Amanda Brice3:35 PM

    I live in Alexandria, VA, nationally recognized as one of America's most historic and dog-friendly cities.

    We're located right outside Washington, DC, and are famous as George Washington's town. His country estate was at Mount Vernon, of course (which is actually in what is now Alexandria, but wasn't at that time), but he also had a townhouse in what is now Old Town Alexandria.

    The first settlement was established in 1695 in what was then the British Colony of Virginia. Alexandria was founded in 1749...and yes, GW himself was one of the original surveyers of the lines. Everywhere you look we pay homage to our nation's first president, most notably in the huge George Washington Masonic Memorial, which I walk past every day on the way to work. He is probably the nation's most famous freemason. We also host the country's largest George Washington's Birthday celebration, complete with an annual Birthnight Ball at Gadsby's Tavern, where they've been hosting the Birthnight Ball since 1798 (and yes, he actually attended).

    As of the 2000 census, the city has a total population of 128,283. We're a DC suburb.

    An interesting fact aabout Alexandria is that we haven't always been part of Virginia. In fact, in 1791, we were included in the area chosen by GW himself to become the District of Columbia. Old Town and Arlington, VA share the distinction of having originally been in Virginia, then were ceded to the US Government to form DC, and then later retroceded back to Virginia by the federal govenrment in 1846. I guess they decided they didn't really need us. Fine with me...I pay much lower taxes living in VA than I would in DC, plus I actually get representatives in the House and Senate this way!

    Anyway, Old Town is very historic, and has some of the country's best preserved colonial and federal-style architecture. There's also a famous Ghost Tour in Old Town that's a lot of fun.

  10. Amanda Brice3:38 PM

    Oh, I forgot to mention that the movie "Remember the Titans" is about the high school that my kids will go to if we are still here in Alexandria by the time they're in high school.

  11. Like the illustrious Gwen Hayes, I also live in the great state of Washington, but in Olympia, further away from sparkly vampires but much closer to the freeway. I've lived a lot of other places, and there's no place like this place. I'm planted here.

  12. wow, Amanda--you just learned me something new today.

  13. Did you guys see that? I'm illustrious. A girl can live a long time on an adjective like that.

  14. Cleveland looks nice!

    I'm from New York, we are obviously known for The Empire State Building, The Statue of Liberty, unfortunately The Twins Towers were taken away from us (R.I.P.), Central Park, however New York is an extraordinary place to visit when you get a chance. The city is full of diverse people, it's loud, great place to shop and sight see. Also, their are beautiful museums such as the Metropolitan of Art...jeez their is so many things to do in New York! lol...I just can't write all of it...the only negative thing about it, is the's blah..hehe


  15. AWESOME. I love seeing all these comments about your cities! I've been to DC, VA, and NY too--great places!!

    I've not been out west a lot...I want to change that, though. :D

  16. Jennifer Russell5:28 PM

    I live in Decatur, Georgia. A suburb of Atlanta, Decatur actually predates the city of Atlanta by more than twenty years.

    Two colleges - Emory University and Agnes Scott College - are in the Decatur area. The Centers for Disease Control is headquartered in the surrounding area, as well.

    Like much of the surrounding region, Decatur has a fairly temperate climate. Except, that is, in the summer, when the humidity becomes nearly intolerable. Otherwise, the seasons are fairly mild.

  17. Hello from the Southwest!
    I'm happily raising a family in the suburbs east of Phoenix. The Valley of the Sun as been my home for 14 years now and though I complain about the heat on occasion, I remain in love with my desert home. The tips of the legendary Superstitions can be seen from the east-facing bedrooms of my house. Despite the abundance of Arizona's many beauties, this rough cluster of mountain keeps my heart more than any other. My husband and I would enjoy many sunsets there when we dated and we were married in an outdoor ceremony at a golf resort as the mountains watched in the background. Now as a family we often make the brief drive to Lost Dutchman State Park (interesting history there) for short hikes, photographic inspriation, a visit Goldfield Ghost Town or just to enjoy the view.
    Phoenix itself is home to a number of family friendly museums including the Phoenix Art Museum, the new Children's Museum and our favorite, the Arizona Science Center. We're also huge D-Backs fans and often attend games at Chase Field.
    Of course Arizona State University in Tempe is the epicenter of a lot of activity and I'm proud to call myself a graduate.
    Most of all what I love about living here is having the option to jump in my car and be within sight of awesome views right from a postcard. Right now we are closing out monsoon season, a short two months of frequent dust and thunderstorms. An odd feeling comes with watching the fury of a dark brown dust cloud (technical term: haboob) roll towards you as it swallows the horizon.
    Anyway, if ever you're out AZ way, be sure to visit the more well known destinations such as the Grand Canyon and Sedona, but I would also beg you to leave some room in your itinerary for my favorite place, the mystical Superstitions. Just don't visit during summer.

  18. i live in the city of pure boringness lol i'm just kidding! I live in Dallas, TX. Meh we have downtown which is pretty cool, then there's the street where Kennedy was shot, it still has the X painted on the street. Umm that's pretty much it. lol I don't really know what else i could possibly say about dallas =P

  19. I'm on the Eastern plains of Colorado, or as I like to call it, Kansas-lite. We're surrounded by hundreds of thousands of cows, miles of corn, and acres of scrubby dryland complete with tumbleweeds. Other than the occasional tornado, not much happens out here.

  20. I'm in Southern California, where we have blue skies (when there are no wildfires) and great museums and theater. Also gorgeous hills! And great comic-book stores, ethnic restaurants, and strawberries...

  21. I love Old Town Alexandria. Been there a couple times. A friend lived a couple blocks from the GW Masonic Temple until fairly recently. Highly recommend the ghost tour!

    I'm in Madison, capital of Wisconsin. What we have to offer:

    * The Capitol, patterned after the one in DC, but a few respectful inches shorter. Beautiful marble halls inside, with murals, statues and mosaics everywhere. The grounds host a ton of events in summer, including: Saturday farmer's market, Concerts on the Square, Art Fair on the Square and, this weekend, The Taste of Madison. From the Capitol, stroll down State St. to...

    * The University of Wisconsin - Go badgers! Not only one of the best schools in the nation, but a world leader in science and technology. Also, Babcock dairy (Mmmm, ice cream!) and Memorial Union Terrace, which sits on Lake Mendota.

    * Lakes. Five of them. The two largest, Monona and Mendota, are separated by an isthmus, a mile wide spit of land on which the Capitol sits. Beautiful setting, but makes getting around downtown a PITA sometimes. The other lakes are Wingra, Waubesa and Mud (that last is really creative after the Native American names, huh?).

    * Vilas Zoo, one of the few remaining FREE zoos in the country. It is completely sustained by donations.

    * Monona Terrace. Based on a design by Frank Lloyd Wright. Sits on Lake Monona, where Otis Redding's plane went down. There's a memorial to him in the rooftop garden.

    * Olbrich Botanic Gardens on the east side, and Allen Gardens on the University campus.

    * Museums. Chazen Art, Madison Children's Museum, Wisconsin Hist. Museum, Wisconsin Veteran's Museum, geology museum on UW campus, Museum of Modern Art inside Overture Center for the Arts.

    * Forest Hill Cemetery, est. a few years prior to the Civil War. It was laid out as a pleasure park, with lots of shade trees and winding paths--families used to picnic here on weekends, up until around WWII. Contains a Union graveyard, as well as the northern-most Confederate graveyard, Confederate Rest. One of my favorite events is coming up Oct 4, the annual Talking Spirits Tour. Very peaceful; I love walking there!