August 21, 2011

The Summer I Became A Townie

Currently Listening To: Into The Morning, Ben Rector
2 Days Til: classes start. (WHAT?!)

Apologies for my absence, all, but in the past few days everyone has been trickling – and then pouring – back into Charlottesville. And it’s wonderful, catching up with everyone and hearing about everyone’s adventures and having the house fill up again. But as I sit here on my bed watching out my window as cars ease through the four-way stop sign at 14th and Gordon, I realized that there about quadruple the number of cars as last week, and that I had kind of really gotten used to C’ville sans students.

Y’all, C’ville and I have gotten close this summer. It’s funny how little I knew about what lay beyond the reaches of the University before. But now, after working at the Downtown Mall and having days off to explore – not to mention my family’s new house in the area – I feel kind of like a local. I know where to park for free around the Downtown Mall and I recognize the regulars who mill around down there – and they’ve started to recognize me. (I can tell because the people who work at the Dumpling place have started giving me eight dumplings in one order instead of seven. Probably because they feel sorry for me because I am there by myself so much...) I’ve exchanged the walk to Grounds for the trek down West Main Street, and the typical student-aimed restaurants of the Corner for local gems like Crozet Pizza, Belmont Barbeque, Bellair Market, Spudnuts and Crozet Mudhouse. The twenty-minute, countryside drive between Charlottesville and Crozet is second nature to me now, and I now even know how to use the 250-Bypass. I’ve gone to Chiles Orchard for strawberries and peaches, swung off the rope swing at Blue Hole and discovered Chris Green Lake.

And it’s been lovely.

And so although I sometimes secretly get jealous when people tell me about the incredible, adventurous, exotic summers they’ve just returned from, I’m grateful for the way I’ve gotten to know this town that I’ll be in for another two years.

So Charlottesville, here’s to you.

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