(per my wise friend’s advice, I elected to watch the above video with the sound on MUTE!)
I think this is such a great video! It was emailed to me last night by a friend, and my initial observations were:
I think it is so interesting that nowadays there is, very distinctly, city life and rural life… I often forget that going that far back its sort of surreal blended version of the two….being that san fran in this video is in fact a city, there are all the tell tale signs of it: the never-ending row of buildings, the tracks for the trolley’s, the news boy the scores of people in such a hurry (strikes me as more city than rural temperment) but then unexpectedly (from my 21st century perspective) there are all these signs of rural life: the dirt road, the wagon wheels!, the buggies, the random dude on his own horse…
Then I think how martin scorcese and every other period-relevant director must have watched this VERY video for historical reference and this singular depiction of this one street on this one day is what accounts for all historical movies having little precocious newsboys and wild kids hanging off of trolley’s and men with their butcher aprons on running about, couples promenading…AND it really makes you wonder when traffic lanes and lights first came about.
(said friend has since replied with the following answers to my above questions: the lanes came about in 1911 when some dude had been driving behind a leaking milk truck that had left lines in the road, and then of course, the first traffic light in America was in…none other than our very own, Cleveland, OH. sourced here and here)
Well, I have been thinking a lot lately about the differences, the pros and cons even of City and Rural life. This past summer, at the end of July/beginning of August I had to move out of the house I had been renting in Cleveland. As August and September are huge buying trip months, I knew I would be traveling a lot; So I packed all of my things, put them into storage and headed to the sweet comforts of Chagrin Falls to stay with my parents and friends while bouncing in and out of town.
During that time, I had some major work projects in the mix and keeping me even more busy than usual, so being able to come ‘home’ to the quiet comforts of what felt like rural life, (relative to hub bub of living in Cleveland where I was immersed with business and work seemingly round the clock) was such a comfort. I allowed myself, (like those who keep traditional work hours) to ‘turn-off’ once I crossed the threshold of Chagrin.
It was a perfect time, spent with family and my life-long best friends. I went to the great Geauga County Fair and the Demolition Derby. I went to an Octoberfest party and many a dinner was had outside…and, often around a fire.
While taking this respite was much needed and much enjoyed, it, alas, was always meant to be temporary. It was time to come back to Cleveland (and to all my things!).
Being that I am involved in various projects in Cleveland and having a passion for it’s revitalization, I decided that it was time I live right smack dab in the heart of it! And so it is that I have moved to the E.4th street neighborhood, into an apartment loooking out onto Euclid Avenue and the beautiful Arcade. It really is an amazingly different experience than living in Cleveland’s near west urban neighborhoods, where I have spent all of my last 8 years…not necessarily better or worse (its like an apples to oranges comparison really), just different.
The truth is, and this is SUCH an obvious statement to make, but living in downtown Cleveland, well…it feels…like living in a downtown!!
There is just something so different about it, maybe it’s the height of the buildings, or being surrounded by the oldest parts of our city, its best architectural elements…a combination of all and more, i am sure but whatever it is…I am under it’s spell!
I think maybe it is just the intense sense of history lurking behind all the 21st century updates that I can’t ignore; That set my imagination ablaze!
(the image below is almost exactly the view from my apartment, I am perhaps one building closer to the soldiers and sailors monument than from where this shot was taken, as I know i am just a bit closer to the arcade, but this is so darn close to what my exact modern perspective is and that thrills me! image sourced here.)
in any event…I am back at it, and more inspired than ever. See you around Cleveland!