After a long day touring DC I'm exhausted, so I'll get straight to the point of this post.
MommyK's question is next on the list and she wonders about my migration to the big city.
What brought you to Baltimore? What do you like best about the city and what's the biggest downside to city living?
The first time I visited Baltimore, I fell in love with the Inner Harbor and had a feeling I might end up living here some day. It was about four years until that actually happened, though. Looking back on my history, it seems like maybe I was fated to come here, if one believes in such things. When I was contemplating medical school, Johns Hopkins was my first choice. When medical school was no longer my plan, I applied for the Teach for America program and my first-choice placement was Baltimore. When that didn't work out, I ended up at Kennedy Krieger Institute. Fate, I tell you.
The details on how and why I ended up here are long and complicated story, but I basically moved to Baltimore to work at Kennedy, a renowned hospital that treats children with a variety of developmental disabilities and disorders. I worked on an inpatient unit that treated children with severe behavior disorders as well as developmental disabilities. I'd been working with children with autism for a couple of years and had developed an interest in Applied Behavior Analysis, so it seemed a place like Kennedy was the logical next step.
The thing I like best about living in Baltimore (and a city in general) are all the available opportunities and resources. Where I grew up, cultural, social, educational, and professional opportunities were pretty limited. In the city I can go to a movie, a mall, a museum, a play or musical, a club, a natural food store, or a park without much planning (or driving). I also love that I'm so close to DC and NYC.
The biggest downside of living in the city is that I don't always feel as safe as I did in my tiny little hometown. There, walking alone at night isn't a problem. Here, at least in my current neighborhood, I wouldn't dare. Don't get me wrong, I feel safe parking and walking to my house and I feel safe in my neighborhood in general. But I wouldn't tempt the fates by, say, taking a jog in the park alone after dark.
It's your turn. What's your favorite thing about your current town? What's the thing you least like?
If you've got a burning question for me but haven't had a chance to ask it, you can go to the original post and leave your question in a comment. I'll keep answering a question or two a day until they're all answered.
If you're just tuning in, check out the rest of the series.