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Why did you move there?

Every now and then, when I run into a friend I haven't seen in a while, I talk about how I moved up north. Most times, the response is very understanding, as a number of people I've known who hang around Deep Ellum/White Rock Lake live farther up north. Yet there are times when I get this baffled projection from somebody about how I've moved north of 635. It's as if I've moved to Oklahoma.

To put 635 in context, it is about fifteen miles north of downtown Dallas. The drive from my house to downtown, with minimal traffic, is about 22 minutes. Not a hassle of a drive, by no means, but it seems like a dividing line of ideologies. As in, the farther north you move, the farther you enter a zone of squeaky clean suburbia where there isn't any crime and the Republican party is the only way to go. Understandably, it's a fantasy world that a lot of people have tried to escape for years. Including me.

Well, I'm stubborn of the worst kind, and I'm here to tell you that I cannot fight adulthood. And part of adulthood is trying to find an accommodating living situation that equals or betters the soon-to-be-former living situation.

In our case, we couldn't fathom moving into an apartment or cramped house/duplex that would charge an enormous amount for a pet deposit. Having three dogs would do that, and since we love our dogs so much, we wouldn't have this any other way. We tried to find places in and around the White Rock Lake area and the M streets. That resulted in a lot of unanswered e-mails and phonecalls. Alas, our current landlord was the first to call us back and was OK with us moving by the first of October. And the pet deposit was only $200 total for all three dogs.

Given the notice of moving out from the last place, we needed a place as quickly as possible, and we really lucked out. Our landlord is fantastic, as are the neighbors and the neighborhood. I don't think I've changed my personality or ideologies for the worse. We are surrounded by a neighborhood with character, locally-owned restaurants that are better than chain restaurants, and people are a bit more friendly. And they don't look like they came from a town called Stepford.

Sure, I'm less likely to go to the "cool" part of town a handful of times during the week, but I still go there and have a great time. Matter of fact, I feel more comfortable going out than ever before. How is that a bad thing?




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