Saturday Six #5: Places I Would Live

I’ll qualify this post by saying that affordability and distance from family are not considerations for this list. I’ve made it assuming that I could live comfortably in any of these places and have access to those I love most, whenever I want to see them. I also didn’t include anywhere in Michigan, since I spent an entire previous post listing all the reasons I’d move back there if the opportunity ever arose!

Circleville, Ohio. I’ve written about the Circleville Pumpkin Show, an annual festival near and dear to my heart. If I ever had the opportunity to own a historic house in downtown Circleville, especially if it was within the bounds of the show, I would do it in a heartbeat. I’d love to be involved and invest in that community more than just once a year, and maybe even earn a spot on the planning committee. And I’m pretty sure my girls would all be thrilled to be able to compete in the annual Miss Pumpkin Show competition.

Pumpkin and gourd display in Circleville, with the Ferris wheel in the background.

St. Kitts. I used to watch HGTV and scoff at people who decided to move to another country after visiting there once or twice. But then we went to St. Kitts on our honeymoon. There was just something about this Caribbean island that spoke to me when we visited on both of our cruises. Maybe it was the history, maybe it was the culture, maybe it was the monkeys or the beaches, or even the incredible spot overlooking both the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. But I suddenly understood how people could make those life-changing decisions.

Brimstone Hill Fortress, where we were above the rainbow.

New York City. I’ve only been to NYC twice, and only once as an adult, but I loved it. I love big cities and the activity and the opportunities and the food. I would even love to try my hand at raising a family in New York City. I know it would have its challenges, but it would also have so many great rewards. 

Washington, DC. Another big city! I’ve said before, it’s not about the politics for me. Here, it’s about the history and the museums and the architecture. I would absolutely raise a family here, too, and squeeze every last drop I could out of our nation’s capital. My love for DC started when I was a Congressional Page during my junior year in high school, and one of the biggest questions I sometimes ask myself is why I didn’t try harder to make DC a reality, either for college, grad school, or my career. (Really, I know it’s because I didn’t want to be that far from my family.)

Florida’s West Coast. Particularly, anywhere between Clearwater Beach and Treasure Island. I have been to this part of Florida many times, and I absolutely love it. When we lived in Florida when I was in elementary school, Clearwater Beach was the beach we went to most often, so this area still has a bit of a “home” feel to me. And my family’s favorite vacation spot in Redington Shores is one of my happy places. 

Gulf and white sand and palm trees in Redington Shores

Gettysburg, PA. I’m a historian but not much of a Civil War “buff.” It’s not even one of my preferred time periods to read or write about. But when I visited Gettysburg on our 8th grade field trip, I was moved. Multiple times, I was the last one back on the bus because I just had to stand there and FEEL everything. And every time I’ve been back since (including once when I interviewed for a job that I sadly did not get), I felt it even more: the sacredness of a place that took the lives of so many in such a short time. It’s a haunting, unsettling feeling for sure, but also a feeling of being so closely connected to the past, as if that veil between past and present is just barely there.

There’s a difference between loving a place and feeling like you could live there, and these all made that second cut. It’s fun to imagine and dream what life would be like in these locales, and maybe even dream about making it a reality someday.

Where would you live if it could be anywhere?

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