Ten years ago this week I became a south sider.
I signed the papers closing on my condo and made the decision to become a resident of Woodlawn.
Aside from hating my developer, my time as a south sider has been largely enjoyable.
Up until 10 years ago it was where I landed when I got out of college.
In your early 30’s you start doing grown up things. Most people settle down with a spouse, have kids and move to the suburbs; I moved to the south side.
The swag and hustle of the south side taught me a true appreciation for our imperfect but beautiful city.
I learned that decency flourishes in some of the most unexpected places.
That respect & kindness can be delivered by some of the most unlikely messengers.
I learned that the good that people do, most times isn’t reported in the news.
That’s not to say that it’s a bed of roses down here.
The local news teems with stories of murders and shootings. The south side’s reputation precedes it both nationally and internationally.
Despite all of the bad, I can’t help but see the beauty in the bones of the old buildings and the dignified pride that they still exude.
I can’t help gushing about the Jackson & Washington Parks.
I see everything that the south side was and everything that it can become again.
While I don’t know what the future will bring for Woodlawn, I’m doing my best to participate in the process.