I lived in a big city for a few years. I lived in an area with many other young professionals and college students. I worked in an area previously called The Combat Zone. There were approximately 4 miles between these locations.
It was at least a 45-minute subway ride.
I would leave my apartment, walk down the steepest hill in the world (in heels sometimes!) to the subway stop…get on a crowded subway…and suffer through approximately 20 stops before I reached my exit.
Did I mention I only lived 4 miles from my office?
And my husband lived in the city for a year as well. His commute was so horrible we just laughed. He called it the “pizza slice.” He rode the subway 45 minutes into the city, switched trains to go to the commuter rail and rode it 45 minutes out of the city in a different direction.
I’m by no means knocking public transportation systems! I honestly think they are an amazing asset and cost effective resource for city-dwellers. There are definitely some days I miss it, especially after a freak ice storm. But I will admit our ability to own, drive – and park! – a car was a major factor in moving back to Iowa.
On a trip to Chicago this summer we found ourselves fighting post-Cub-game traffic to get back onto the Interstate. We were bumper-to-bumper in one of those unusual areas where the highway is above you and around you in a mess of road.
As we drove out of a small tunnel the first thing in my range of sight was a billboard. A man was walking toward his front the door, obviously just getting home from work. Children raced toward him, ready to jump into his arms.
The caption: Another Iowa Rush Hour.
So many of us take it for granted, but we really are blessed to have short commutes, little-to-no rush hour, and plenty of places to park.
There are some days I miss the city. But there were many more days I lived in the city and missed here.