|There are about sixteen more images from my adventure in my 'burb that are on my portfolio if you are interested beyond the ten featured here. Also, I promise I'm really not a creep.|
But that was only from weekend glimpses of the hood.
After actually spending time in the hood, I knew that it wasn't all everyone is your aunty and uncle all the time like the soapies on TV. I found out that if you were any two shades of different, you were either observed like a rare butterfly or stamped on like a gross, squiggly caterpillar.
And then I fell in love with cities. Big cities, that is. Where the kids from the ghetto run to so that they can achieve their dreams (if they were lucky enough to realise their potential and shit or whatever) or escape their problems in the hustle and bustle. This was a place with buildings so high they almost blocked out the sun. Where people gambled with their lives every second by weaving through continuous traffic. There was hooting and exhaust fumes and some guy around the corner was trying sell you cigarettes even though you're clearly not of age. When the police show up, the DVD stand you were thinking about purchasing Madea's Big Happy Family from disappeared before you could even say Tyler Perry.
Man, the city was everything. No one slept and people walked everywhere. The street lights and crisp wind and house music blasting from sedans made you feel like wrapping a trench coat around yourself and experiencing everything in life. In apartments beyond your vision people were making dinner, laughing, dancing and doing things you weren't supposed to think about, watching soapies and having rows, writing angry poetry, cursing at the sky.
In all those amber windows, life was happening.
But then I spent time in an actual big city, not just the few trips to town (the CBD) with my friends or my mom (when they wanted to give sheltered ol' me a taste of real life), and I couldn't keep up. There were yellows cabs everywhere and people moving at their own pace. Everything was a cloud of cigarette smoke and exhaust fumes and phone calls and heels clicking and clacking. I loved every moment of it. I loved looking out my window and seeing lights and lights and lights. I loved leaning out of my window and just listening. I loved it so much I didn't want to experience it again. I didn't want the big city to be marred by repetition or grim reality, I wanted to keep it to myself and spend forever romanticising it.
Tavi and Petra and seeing stuff like this that introduced me to the quiet beauty of the suburbs I've lived in most of my life.
Where the houses were old and none of them were the same shade, moms were always cranky about kids riding their bikes across the lawn, all the dogs knew (and hated you), that one kid would greet you everytime you walked by, there was the love of your life living up the street (whose house just happened to be apart of your jogging route).
When the sun was setting, the streets were kind of quiet with the sounds of birds flying away, gates opening and closing, your smelly barefeet against the tar and everything was tinted pink and orange and you felt really romantic and wanted to listen to super smooth bands and think about your crush and why Kelly Clarkson fell off and how you should be doing homework.
All kinds of bloody murder happens in the suburbs and you wouldn't even know because it comes in this manicured lawn, wrought iron gates, pastel granny flats, blue and red and yellow playground equipment package.
You've got to love that.