I haven't been good about writing updates about my life here in Baltimore! I very much like the city, although I do miss the walkability of DC. While my neighborhood here, Fells Point, is very easy to walk around in, it doesn't have a grocery store, or a pharmacy, within walking distance of my building. And for a place to get MY approval of walkability, it needs those two things! There are plenty of art galleries and that kind of stuff, but to me those things don't represent a real neighborhood, they instead represent tourism. In a way Fells Point reminds me a little bit of Athens, Georgia, in that it has a lot of restaurants, bars, and stores that sell things I don't need... I still find it weird that I have to drive to the grocery store, but at least it is close and on the way to work.
Apart from the walking aspect, I really do like Baltimore. It is unpretentious. It is a city of neighborhoods, which is very cool. I am looking forward to exploring more of them soon. The Inner Harbor is a neat spot for tourists and locals alike. People in Baltimore are grounded, often working-class, and very connected to the area. I am amazed at the amount of people that have lived here their whole lives, and whose parents and grandparents have done the same.
As far as work goes, I am very happy. My colleagues are wonderful and I really enjoy learning about how important the port is and was for this city. I am currently watching Season 2 of HBO's The Wire, which revolves around the port. It was pretty cool to see two of our ships in the first episode! I actually do learn a lot from the show...
My apartment is also very nice, and I really enjoy that it stays so warm! Having other apartments below, over, and on the sides makes for a toasty place! A couple of cockroaches have visited but I try to forget that... The place is BIG and my friend suggested that I could rent out my walk-in closet to a small family!
In my spare time, I often head down to DC - now that I feel confident enough to drive there it doesn't take more than an hour to get there. I have also joined a very very nice gym, MAC, in Harbor East. It's a real luxurious gym, with four - 4 - pools! (Saltwater pools, to be exact!) I am enjoying the pools and the other amenities A LOT! I have also been horseback riding, which was fun although the place seemed a little shady.
A photo from Vaccaro's, a Baltimore institution!