Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Flash Backtime: A Yankee in the Garden of Good and Evil

I'm a northeast guy.

Grew up in Jersey. Went to Syracuse. Lived in Connecticut and on Manhattan's Upper West Side.

My wife's career brought us a pair of 3-year stints in Omaha and Kalamazoo.

My only knowledge of Savannah before we moved here was the movie adaptation of the John Berendt novel. Not even my extensive travels had ever landed me in this fashionable, unconventional, warm and friendly US city.

We moved here in October of 2007. I spent my first six months on the road, and then we bought a house. When I finally had a chance to breathe and soak things in, I was looking for an outlet for my perspective.

I wrote a blog for Savannah Now, the online arm of the Savannah Morning News. Posting my thoughts, observations, and experiences became habit-forming. On top of that it was an election year, and I had a chance to engage in many political differences of opinion. It wasn't why I started, and it's not where I am. But this site, like myself, is still a work in progress.

Anyway, my very first post "A Yankee in the Garden of Good and Evil" was written one year ago today.

May 20, 2008

Greetings and welcome to my first blog entry.

I grew up in the northeast and have spent the last several years in the midwest, before taking up (permanent) residence here in the Thomas Square district almost a year ago.

For those of you who have lived here your whole life, you can't possibly appreciate what a unique place this is.

In my neighborhood, you don't have to travel far to see it all. Churches next to tenements, next to mansions, next to empty lots, next to playgrounds.

Rich and poor, black and white, old and young, democrat and republican all live side-by-side. It is the contrary nature of this town that has me scratching my head about good and evil.

For every friendly neighbor, smiling waitress, or chatty supermarket cashier, there is the spectre of the all-too-common criminal.

My porch furniture may be locked up, but that doesn't deter the pettiest of thieves from walking up my steps and taking such personal items as a decorated Halloween pumpkin, a plant, or a pitcher of sun tea. I can't understand the mental makeup of someone who would take something of only sentimental value.

Back in New York City, I had my car broken into on more than one occasion, but it always seemed like it was par for the course. Here there's something more "unethical" about crime...if that makes any sense at all.

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