Thursday, January 6, 2011

Ode to Minneapolis!

You always scared me when I was a girl.  You were this mysterious far away land (and in reality you were only 30 miles south) that people talked about, and I knew I would meet you one day but I never thought I could miss you like this.  Minneapolis, land of my birth!  How do I miss thee?  Let me count the ways!  From your manageable brightly lit skyline that is perfectly in frame from the top of the St. Anthony Hill to your cobble mall downtown, I miss you.  I miss you even though (with you) my memories are bitter sweet.  Some of my most trying times were experienced within your borders and I can recall every bump and pothole that lined my path as I made my way via city bus to my downtown job.  The bus always smelled of either old booze and musty people or the best cologne that money can buy.  I learned the 'code' of the bus and that was to either pretend you were reading or sleeping. Looking out the window wasn't a good enough strategy to keep the pick up artists at bay. I remember watching the professionals as they waited at the cross walk in their tailored wool overcoats and designer briefcases, and I watched those same professionals pull out of the parking garage (in their warm cars at the end of the day) while I stood out in the dark miserable cold waiting for my return bus.  The desire to be with them was so strong because I wanted to BE them.  Me in my mismatched winter clothes and my thread bare socks without a penny to my name ~ me who made sure to learn the habit trail-like skyway system because it gave me a reason to walk through the best department stores where I would touch the beautiful clothes as I passed by, occasionally catching an 'evil' eye from a sales clerk who could plainly see that I was just one step away from homelessness.  It's amazing how perspective changes as you change.  How the frightening 'big' city just isn't any longer.  Within your blocks, I have been harrassed and haggled, chased and protected.  I have laughed and cried, danced and screamed with joy.  Like a Genie in a bottle you hold a part of me hostage because, in part you created me.  You taught me that tolerance and intergration are not just important but neccessary to a vital community (thank you) you taught me that diversity of not just people, cultures and religions, but of industry keeps a community vibrant and alive (thank you) and that seeing the arts & sculpture at every turn confirmed in me that creative expression and beauty are held in high regard & always waiting to be revealed ~ that parks and lakes, festivals and traditions keep people longing for more even though they must endure some of the most brutal winters known to man!  I was born in a hospital that was located in an area that is now known for being the pinnacle of gourmet food and arts ~ where the brightest stars and the biggest thinkers gather to exchange ideas and energy.  Maybe next time I return to visit you, you will open that bottle and let my Genie out so that I can be free to love the D.

Lisa Ekanger Your Hometown Realtor!

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