I really like working in the city, downtown more specifically.
I realize it’s not for everyone. It’s busy and noisy, sometimes very busy and noisy.
You have to pay attention to where you are going and who is around you. There are people everywhere and cars everywhere going up and down the one-way streets. And in the case of downtown San Diego, there are trolleys and trains too. There are business people and non-business people. There are some people you want to avoid if you are walking by yourself.
There is rarely a week that goes by where you don’t hear or see some kind of emergency vehicle. Police cars, ambulances, and fire trucks are a common occurrence. It is very rarely boring.
You can get almost any kind of food you want for lunch within walking distance. Sometimes the smells of that food as you walk down the street can be wonderful. Sometimes other smells kill the wonderful food smells. The not-so-great smells are especially bad in the summer. I’ll leave it at that. But if you work downtown in any major city, you know what I mean.
But despite some of the craziness, the smells, the traffic, and some questionable street inhabitants, I still really like it.
I have worked in business parks a few times over the years. They are quiet, peaceful, have lots of trees, usually ample and free parking, and a few sandwich shops within walking distance of the office. There’s nothing wrong with sandwich shops, it’s just that office building delis limit your lunchtime choices a bit when that’s all you have within walking distance.
Sure, there aren’t as many trees downtown. It is definitely not quiet and there are still a lot of sandwich shops. But I like the how busy it is. I like the hustle and bustle. I like the variety of people you see walking the streets. I like that if I want to do something as simple as take a Starbucks break at two in the afternoon I can walk a block, get my coffee, and be back at my desk in 10 minutes.
That could never happen when I was a business park dweller. Getting a Frappuccino at two in the afternoon would have meant getting in my car, driving two miles, finding parking, ordering and waiting for my coffee drink and driving back to the office. This maneuver could easily take at least a half hour, which would never have been acceptable at two in the afternoon where I worked.
I know that there are people who don’t like the idea of working in the middle of a big city because I worked with some of them. In fact, when I left my last business park located job over nine years ago, several people told me that they would never work downtown and that they didn’t really understand why I was excited about it.
I pretty much consider myself a city girl. I grew up in the suburbs of what I think, at the moment, is somewhere around the 8th largest city in the U.S. (It seems to usually fluctuate between being the 6th largest city and 8th largest city, depending on what’s going on around here.) San Diego and downtown in particular, has changed drastically since I was a kid. I have worked in downtown San Diego for about 18 years of my working adult life, and it continues to grow, change, and mature. I’m so glad I have been here to see it.