Dear Every Other City in the World

Dear Sara,

So you know that saying, “The grass is always greener on the other side?” Of course you do, you went to primary school. Anyways this saying plagues my life.

I like the point you made about places needing context in your last letter. I think that’s absolutely true. It’s like associating names, places, faces, with the people or the things you did there. Alexandria, VA will always be home for me. Of course I’ll have many different “homes”…but there’s no other city that I am going to have that kind of connection with.

New York is similar. I didn’t exactly go through puberty in New York, but I have grown up here and more than likely will continue to grow here. It’s the city that gave me opportunities and challenged me in ways that I have never been challenged before.

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And when I studied abroad, I spent a full year traveling to different cities and towns, exploring what each place had to offer, how it was different from all the other places I’ve been, but still kind of the same. People are people all over the world so there are bound to be similarities. Finding these differences and similarities is what makes travel so much fun.

But in many ways I feel like I always end up romanticizing different cities when I’ve lived in the same one for however long. I start to think about how such-and-such place is probably less expensive, and has so many great restaurants, and has less people in it so I don’t feel like I’m swimming through a giant sea anemone. There’s a new and exciting culture to said city that I haven’t explored. There’s new people I haven’t yet met. Not everyone can live in New York City, and let’s be real, most people in the world don’t and maybe/probably don’t want to. Something is keeping them in their respective cities and I want to know what it is.

Of course New York has everything you could ever want to do and see and eat and not so much smell but you get the idea. And I mean it literally has everything. But I have always been a curious child. I want to see every city and country road, to try every new food and drink, to climb every trail and to swim in every ocean. We’ve talked about this problem of mine before. And going to Australia has only cemented my love for travel and how much I love to keep moving, to keep trying. This is something I want to hold on to, because of how inspired I become when I’m about to go on an adventure.

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But this can also be detrimental to my mental state. As I’ve been told by many friends, it is important to stay present where you are. Dreaming about where you’re going to be in five years is all fine and good. But there are things happening right in front of us. And it’s important to recognize that you are here, on this grass, and it’s time to do whatever it is you need to do to continue moving forward and on to the next place, the next meal, the next adventure.

I hope I can get there. And if you want, you’ve welcome to join.

Love, Kelly

P.S. So I totally trust your opinion on period pieces, speaking of which, you should watch Mercy Street, a Civil War drama set in ALEXANDRIA, VA with TED from HIMYM. I know MIND BLOWN. Anyways, I mostly want to know if it’s a good interpretation or if it’s stupid and if it is stupid, is it stupid in a good way. Also James Norton’s face is pretty amazing so……

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