An Appreciation of Columbia Heights

Now I walk a lot. That is probably obvious by now. And I walk at a pretty brisk pace as well. I don’t know if it’s my New York upbringing but, you know, I have this illness where I have to be on the move. I also sometimes hallucinate but that is neither here nor there. What I’m writing about is the fact that today I actually slowed down. I got to an interview about an hour early and just sat down near 13th Street and Kenyon. If you ever forget how awesome Columbia Heights is, I suggest you do the same. The diversity of people who walked by me was staggering. While surrounded by incredible rowhouses, I heard some amazing Spanish music. I saw folks walking by with Yoga mats rolled up and hung across their backs. I saw, perhaps, some of the cutest kids on the eastern seaboard. I saw folks in their Sunday finest. And the language too. I heard people speaking Spanish and I also heard some very course street slang that was no less beautiful and poetic to my ears. People from all walks of life sauntered past me and the one thing they had in common was that they were all happy, which was a beautiful thing to see.

12 Comment

  • I need a hankie….

  • Prince Of Petworth

    I hear ya. I contemplated kicking my own ass after writing this last night but sometimes all you read about is crime and development in CH and it’s good to remember the simple things that make the neighborhood great.

  • Wow..that new medication your on is really working…I need some of that sh*t!

  • Prince Of Petworth

    You can get it at any many area liquor stores. It’s called Powers Irish Whiskey…

  • I often think the same thing about our neighborhood. I totally love how you can see all types and just soak it in…

  • Based on my own recent experience at that intersection, I was guessing you would say “They all carried Target bags.” I still get a little misty about that.

    Seriously, the pedestrian traffic around the Tivoli is what amazes me.

  • Yes, its quite remarable how the metro station area has really come alive. And once all the restaurants are open, its going to be pretty sweet spot for an evening out too (and before anyone gets up in arms – yes, I do patronize the good old restaurants in the area too)! 🙂

  • Eyes on the street, feet on the sidewalk. True urbanism comes to life once more.

  • Really, they were ALL happy? You had me up until that comment. Any time I’ve ever walked around my neighborhood, I’ve seen a mix of some pretty angry, disappointed, bouncy, happy, drunk, lively, merry, pissed off people. That’s what I love about this neighborhood: something for everyone.

  • Come one come all. Walk down the street to see the nice rowhomes w. fountains……it is becoming a great place and it is only getting better

  • Prince Of Petworth

    It’s true they were all happy but maybe because it was 3pm in the afternoon on fairly nice day. ‘course I made the conclusion of “happy” based on 30 second snapshots so perhaps there were some sad, angry, etc souls mixed in.

  • what is really cool about Columbia Heights is that there are SO MANY PEOPLE on the street now!! I moved to Mt. Pleasant in 1999 right after the Columbia Heights metro opened…it was a mighty scary walk home then through a very dark destruction zone. Can’t wait to see the new businesses open near the Petworth metro and hope the same thing happens up there – Petworth could be a very walkable neighborhood, but the dearth of people on the street at night makes it a little intimidating….

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