I went into Ann Arbor today. I tried to do it with an eye for the negative, but goddamn it Ann Arbor is factually nicer than Asheville. It was almost astounding to take in. Even the weird strip malls and houses that back in my AA days seemed to sit too close to the road on Stadium looked luxuriously well maintained... and seeing that there are easements with grass and trees EVERY where... were further from the road then any house I've seen in Asheville outside of the Biltmore estate! I mean everything is clean and it stands out like "LOOK AT ME!!!! I DON'T HAVE ANY GRAFFITI OR BOARDED UP (or cracked, or unstaged, etc) WINDOWS!!!" For real folks. I had actually gotten used to Asheville (and I should note that I'm not nearly as upset about being here as I feared... just noting factual differences) so it's almost odd to see things so well kept. Even the highways seem cleaner... if that is even possible. It just makes me wonder even more about what the hell is going on down there. Seriously! I'm driving around in a state that is going through terrible economic times and still things look new and maintained.
I don't know what to tell you other than buy a plane ticket to Asheville drive around the entire metro area and then get one to Ann Arbor and get back to me on your impressions. I'd be pretty surprised if you walk away with a very different take on things.
The good news is that I saw our house and lived through it. I was really worried it would be a horrible grief inducing experience but it was okay. The house looked familiar but it didn't have the "this is the house you brought your babies home to" vibe shouting out at me as we drove by. In fact it seemed small and like a house we had outgrown when I saw it. Kid seemed okay too. I did notice that we left a wind chime on our porch (which I actually always hated) and I felt the strong urge to sneak up on the porch and steal it back.. but I resisted.
That's all for now.
Only 2 more days to enter the Compacting Christmas Giveaway!