I was born in Oklahoma. My mother was from there and my father is from Texas. Almost all of my family lives in Texas and I will always carry a part of Texas in my heart. "Deep in the heart of Texas" :)
But fate, a man and probably a few bad choices led me to the Philadelphia area over 20 years and there are so many reasons I have not left. Some having to do with circumstances, some with pride, some with love and some just because this is such an amazing place to be. My father was a career Army officer so we did our share of traveling. I've visited or lived in a lot of other places in the beautiful USA and each is unique. There are a lot of places in the country where the history is as rich, the culture as dignified and the excitement as intense, but there is a feel to Philly that no where else has. At least for me.
It's definitely not the weather that keeps me here. I hate to be cold, but the beautiful change of seasons can be worth bundling up for. Maybe it is the small town feel of this big city. Everyone says this is a city of neighborhoods and it is completely true. From one block to the next you can move into a different world, yet it is all the same and we are all tied together by proximity and our love for this place. And it's not just the city, this entire area – Southeastern Pennsylvania, South Jersey, Delaware. The diversity, the changing views, it becomes difficult to express how wonderful it all is and why I feel so at home here. I have spent time living in apartment complexes in the ultimate suburbia of South Jersey which has its own charm when you really want a neighborhood feel. And the shore (the beach/ocean for those of you not from here) is less than an hour away! I've also lived out in the rolling hills of Chester County (about 45 minutes west of the city) in beautiful old 100+ year old houses . The openness, the green, the history and never really being that far from anything was comforting and natural. Probably why I spent almost 10 years out there. For the last year+ I have lived right in the middle of this gorgeous city. Right in the middle of the excitement, the history, the beauty and other people, who like me, love the feel and pulse that reverberates down the cobblestone streets, the fantastic restaurants, bars and shops, the little tucked away neighborhood parks, the skyscrapers, bridges and the river.
I am sure that everyone has their reasons and their feelings about where they live. As for me, I will always be an Oklahoman and a Texan, nothing breaks family ties, but I am most definitely now a Philly girl too.
Check out my photos on Flickr as I post pics of the things in my city that catch my eye. So what do you love about you live?