I don’t know where I might be living a year and a half from now, when my boyfriend finishes grad school. I love to chart courses and consider contingencies, but for years it’s been terra incognita, too far out to predict. So we talk sometimes instead about places we’d never move to, and anytime I travel somewhere new, at the back of my mind, I’m weighing if I’d want to live there, not just vacation there. Can I imagine myself showing my friends around those streets? Would we want to choose a new apartment there, maybe even a house?
The answer, reassuringly, is often yes (although serious scrutiny, with real price tags and consequences attached, could easily change the calculations). And even though I know I don’t really want to move farther from my family, it’s fun to imagine new paths, new roots.
Cleveland was never a place I gave much thought to, just a city in nearby Ohio, sitting uninterestingly on the shallowest of the Great Lakes. In high school, I saw an Old 97’s show at the Cleveland House of Blues, but that was the extent of the trip. Then, last spring, I was there with Cooper for his sister’s graduation. There was barely enough time to eat delicious food between ceremonies, enjoy the wonderful “Guardians of Traffic” statues as we crossed the Cuyahoga River, and note how not-empty, building-wise, Cleveland was in comparison to my sprawling rust-belt benchmark, Detroit. I resolved to return and experience more of the city, and on a Saturday morning this April, we drove the few hours there, for a quick weekend away. Continue reading “Trying Cleveland on for Size”