After a brief hiatus, I’m back! The birds and I have relocated to sunny Los Angeles where the weather is always the same and it never rains. My hair and skin are LOVING this lack of moisture and oppressive humidity, and my body adores the warmth and sun. (Do I even need Vitamin D supplements anymore!!??)
But my heart is missing Chicago and the proximity to fresh water rivers and lakes, forests, and actual seasons. I don’t think I’ll have a fall or spring as I know it this year—no crunchy leaves, cold rainy days, or the joy of flowers blooming after an unreasonably long, cold winter.
My favorite thing about where I am now, I must say, is my proximity to black people. Right now I’m living in Windsor Hills (if that means anything to any of you) surrounded by Inglewood to the south, Baldwin Hills and Crenshaw to the north, and Ladera Heights to the west. And there are all types of black people—middle class people, broke as hell people, runners and athletes, dog-lovers, shut-in grannies who only leave for PT appointments, old men who smoke their meats by the pool (Ayeeee! Can I get a plate though!?), dudes fixing their cars in the covered parking spots, fancy-dressed churchgoers, skateboarders, beautiful women with in-between hair wearing bonnets, supermen who just got done with the gym, artists and actors trying to make it, and people with luscious afros getting their glow on.
I guess I’ll just say it: I’ve never lived in a predominantly black neighborhood before. Mixed neighborhoods, yes. Latinx and white neighborhoods, yes. But never black.
Right now I’m not sure where I fit in, but I hope to meet some of my neighbors, join a couple of groups, make a couple of friends, reconnect with my family here, and see what there is to see. What can LA offer me that Chicago can’t? What does this city have that will make me a better editor, stronger writer, and a more confident person? I can't wait to find out.