The Arch

The Arch

I didn’t realize how much I loved St. Louis until I moved away.  I was born and raised there and of course, I took it for granted.  I wanted something more, something bigger and I found it in Phoenix.  However, the small town feel of this mid-size city has me yearning to one day go back.

Don’t get me wrong.  I really like the Valley.  I love the mountains and the hiking.  I also love the glitz and glam of the Valley.  It’s kind of like a little L.A., but without the L.A. prices.   It’s cool to walk around Scottsdale Fashion Square or Kierland Commons with the possibility of running into a celebrity.   It’s also in close proximity to some great cities.  This makes it cheap to go to Vegas, San Diego, San Francisco and Rocky Point for just a weekend. 

Despite all the advantages of living in the Valley, I still get quite homesick.  There is a certain charm to St. Louis that I miss.  I miss my friends some of whom I’ve known throughout grade school, junior high and high school and remain friends to this day.  I miss St. Louis’s small town feel.  It’s not unusual for me to attend a major event such as baseball game or concert and run into at least three people I know.  It’s kind of funny when I run into a St. Louisan in the Valley.  The first question you always have to ask them is “What high school did you go to?”  It’s a weird question, but it’s one we always ask and know the significance of. 

There’s no other place in the country where you can get such great local fare.  The closest thing to St. Louis food in the Valley is Frasher’s in Scottsdale.  They have St. Louis Style Pizza, Gooey Butter Cake, Toasted Ravioli and much more.  I highly recommend going there if you would like to try what foods St. Louis has to offer.  Of course it’s better to go to St. Louis, but Frasher’s represents.  But I do miss my favorites:  Cunetto’s, BARcelona, Imo’s Pizza and the list goes on and on.

I love the many places St. Louis has that you can walk around and chill.  University City, Central West End, Maplewood and Washington Avenue are all great locations to  stroll around, shop at local stores/boutiques and catch a quick bite to eat.  There are so many local cafes that you can sit outside; some even have live music and it’s an awesome just to chill with your friends and have a drink.  Phoenix is working to grow in this area.  With the light rail and the developments going on along the route, local business is booming in Phoenix.  I’m excited to see what’s in store for Phoenix in the next few years.  But until then I will enjoy my day trips on the light rail and continue to visit the local fare.

I love the various recreational opportunities St. Louis has to offer.  There is free admission to the  Science Museum, St. Louis Art Museum, History Museum and Zoo.  Honestly, the St. Louis Zoo puts the Phoenix Zoo to shame and what makes it worse is that you have to pay $15 to get into the Phoenix Zoo.   One of my favorite places to go in St. Louis is to the City Museum.  That place rocks!  The Children’s Museum in Phoenix pales in comparison.  Everytime I go back to St. Louis, I makes sure I hit up the City Museum.  I feel like a kid again when I go.

City Museum Outside

City Museum Outside

City Museum Inside

City Museum Inside

When times are hot here in Phoenix, I get very homesick.  It could be that I lock myself indoors as the temperature rises in the Valley.  As soon as it cools off though, I’m out and about in the Valley.  I’m back to my old routine of hiking and hanging out with friends at outdoor cafes and restaurants. There are only a few more weeks of summer left and I’m looking forward to cooler weather.

I know I love St. Louis, but I love the fact that I live in the Valley right now.  When I settle down more in life, I know that St. Louis is more my speed.  But until then, I will enjoy all that the Valley and Arizona have to offer.

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