The Other World Nearby

My apartment simplex can’t be described as pretty. It doesn’t need to be. I wish it were a wash of color and eccentricity. It has its pockets of interest and intrigue. With a bit of effort, I could transform the entire look and perception of this place. No matter how wild my tastes, there’s no way the result could be lesser than the status quo.

At the street where the parking lot meets Gregg, Poplar Street ends at the railroad tracks. I listened to the excursion train passing this morning as I lay in bed, not wanting to exit its warmth, even as I felt the urge to jump up and find the cool air outside to greet me – and wave at the passersby on the train. At the terminus of Poplar, there’s a crosswalk that leads to a trail pass-through to the neighborhood behind me, serpentinely connecting Gregg and Poplar to Yates, which branches to several other areas and College Avenue.

I love this pass-through. It opens another world to me without much walking to enter it. When I lived on Vanleer in Springdale, it was land-locked in a huge loopy and closed set of streets. There were a couple of places where such pass-through sidewalks or trails would have made using the neighborhood safer and more convenient. The pass-through here at Gregg is relaxing, efficient, and a welcome feature of this area. It’s genius. It’s Fayetteville.

This morning, as I let my feet lead me through the back neighborhoods, it was beautiful and much warmer than you’d expect for mid-November. I could smell the mountains of untended leaves, as well as hear the voices and sounds of hundreds of people moving about on their Saturday mornings.

Every person I waved to waved back. One person offered me a cup of coffee to go. “Next time, I promise!” That’s customer service on a neighborhood level.

I took a picture in front of one of my favorite nearby houses. It’s on Miller Street. It makes me think of the quote, “If yellow is such a happy color, why don’t more people use it?” This house, with its screened-in porch and simple old-style lines, strikes a chord in me. It’s the perfect house to imagine Thanksgiving dinner, full of raucous people and mountains of untouched food on every counter.

Thanks for the trail connection through the neighborhood. It’s made a world of difference for me and my link to those around me.

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