I often wonder what it would be like to raise children in the city. I grew up in Jersey City, a stones throw from NYC, and fantasize about living there now. I picture us visiting museums and parks, riding the subway, Central Park trips, and it just sounds so fantastic. My husband would NEVER live in or near NYC, especially since 9/11. He wants to be as far away from the major urban areas as possible, mostly for safety reasons. That and his need for space - lots of space - between him and his neighbors. Definitely not a city-dweller. I understand, but there's that innate part of me that longs for the city, that needs it to survive.
The suburbs are, well, the suburbs. Honestly they are what you see made fun of in movies with moms lined up in their SUVs dropping off their kids at school dressed in their tennis outfits. Seriously, this is what happens when I bring my 4 year old to preschool in the morning. And I can't stand it. It's just not me. I don't play tennis or drive an SUV. I hate SUVs as a matter of fact. Hubby has one and I hate driving it. Only if absolutely necessary will I get behind that wheel. Then there's all that space between me and my neighbors. Give me a brownstone where I know who lives next door, and that means I know their first names and actually speak with them more than once a month. Space - who needs all that space. To me, it just means more to maintain and keep clean. We presently live in a 4 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath with a finished basement and a sizeable yard with an inground pool. Who wants to keep that clean on a daily basis? Yes, the kids need room to play, but they prefer the beach or the park anyway. This is a fundamental difference (one anyway) between me and my husband. He wants a bigger house with more space, inside and out. More space means more stuff. I'd like to go smaller and have less stuff. At 41 years of age, I doubt I'll change. I think the saying is true: You can take the girl out of the city, but you can't take the city out of the girl. Maybe someday I'll get back there. But for now, it's SUV central.