Friday, November 6, 2009

Livin' in the Citaaaaay

I've been a Minneapolis resident for a few weeks now. I dig it. My commute's a little longer, and totally reverse - I head out to my office in the burbs every day. It's only slightly longer than when I lived in Eagan. My wife has a commute generally less than 10 minutes in which she does not need to take any freeways. It's great for her, and I'm happy - she's had the longer commute for a long time. It's nice to have her in bed longer in the mornings and be home by the time I am usually. She tends to work more hours than me anyway.

I like a lot of things about the city. My Walk Score went from a 39 to a 73, a dramatic improvement. Interestingly, 73 is still in the bottom half of all walk scores in Minneapolis. But it's still way ahead of most anything in the burbs.

I haven't done tons of walking yet. It is getting colder out. But even having 4 or 5 different non-chain restaurants within a few blocks of my place, and hundreds more if you go to a 20 block radius is great. Options were always so limited in Eagan - it was basically a handful of chains or some local chain joints that I could usually get my wife to eat at. For that, I am happy. Fits better with my lifestyle. We ate out a few times this week at different places. Mostly because we could!

Finding things in your new neighborhood is always interesting. I had to figure out where my new polling place was. I voted in the first Minneapolis city elections to feature Ranked Choice (instant runoff) voting. It was not a very interesting mayoral race, with RT Ryback having no serious challenges going in. The park board race was the most interesting thing on the ballot, and only because I live in the 5th district, which was one of the few contested races. Indeed, it's going to the IRV for the official result since three candidates were within a few points of each other.

I also had to figure out where mailboxes were. The USPS web site has a nice tool for that. The nearest redbox. Grocery stores. And on... Lots of stuff is very close.

Since we have a bigger house with more storage, we decided to join Costco and made our first trip there last week. Good decision, will help save us some money in the long run.

I feel good about the long run benefits of living in the city. Someday I'll probably work in DT Minneapolis or the vicinity again. That will come in handy. Even if I don't, we are centrally located to a lot of things now.