Sunday, April 29, 2007

I love my neighborhood

Now that the elder two of three munchkins have bikes, and all the munchkins are at least 2, we decided it was time to take the whole family on a "big walk" (a bit over a mile each way) yesterday. And once again, we happily realized how small town our city is.

After growing up on a farm in the middle of nowhere, I feel absolutely spoiled to live in a place where my daughter's kindergarten is four blocks away; there's a coffee shop two blocks away; I can watch the Freedom Fair fireworks from a bluff very walkable from my house and not battle crowds ... heck, we can walk down to the festival or nab a bus if we so choose; and that there are now officially FOURTEEN children on our block alone, including our three, whom all play their little hearts out in the alley whenever the sun peeks out.

And Saturday, as we biked and hiked up a tiny hill, along the woods of the Stevens St. gully and down the way to our favorite garden store and the kids' longed-for tire swing park ... I think we ran into at least two or three sets of people we knew, and if we'd knocked on a couple doors it could have been more. At the garden store, we chatted with the managers of the place for while, then picked up some netting and a couple plants -- some zucchini and a white pumpkin start -- then crossed the bridge on Proctor to head to Puget Park, where the kids swang and "toilet flushed" on the tire swing to their hearts delight before we stuck them back on their bikes for the trek home.

It always seemed like such an intimidating on-foot stretch. And yet I don't even think it made my face red (which happens REALLY easily for me no matter what). And now that the kids are big enough to not have to be carried the whole way, I look forward to many more lazy yet active Saturdays where we can meander to Proctor, maybe even pick up a friend or two on the way, do some Proctor Farmers Market shopping, stop for coffee or head to the library (I'm thinking we stick the 2-year-old in the wagon next time to help with the return trip luggage!) ... and maybe even do some dinner grocery shopping. All on foot.

Oh, and then I noticed the bridge on Proctor was possibly designed by a distant relative who was a city engineer back in the early 20th Century. THAT was just trippy.

It's still amazing to me. More amazing just how many of my neighbors we know after five years of living here and a dozen of being in the area.

And that's just a tiny bit about why I love Tacoma.

1 comment:

jen said...

I'm in love, too.

We need to start walking down to Proctor regularly, now that I've finally got AB convinced she's capable of walking without the stroller.