We live on the same street, my neighbor and I, and we avoid eye contact at all cost. I’ve seen him dozens of times; on my way to work, coming back from class, on the weekends…too many times, I feel, to introduce myself now. As we pass each other in the street, he glances at me but I look down. Day after day, we pass without saying hello.
We all yearn for a sense of community in our neighborhoods. Basic human nature tells us to feel comfortable around, welcomed, and valued by our neighbors. We need to feel a sense of attachment to improve the places we live in. Therefore, to feel the value of giving back to our communities, we first have to feel valued by our communities. Building sustainable cities and supporting local business starts with caring for and being taken care of by our neighborhood.
Last August, my girlfriend and I embarked on a move to Jamaica Plain, a neighborhood in south central Boston, from Bloomington, Indiana, our beloved college town. Our sights were set high; according to everyone we spoke to, people seriously love Boston. Nine hundred miles later, we Continue reading