Walter Mencken 11 a.m., Nov. 27
- Community Blog
My neighborhood is eclectic, on the fringes of the East Village, near the Gaslamp, within walking distance of Petco Park. The boundaries of the downtown communities are blurred. I just say I live in San Diego. Many moons ago, anything east of 6th was considered a less than desirable place to live. My current residence is on 9th. I walk around the City all the time. There is the very nice, 4 Star Ivy Hotel just 2 blocks away. The library & post office are across the street. That is a dichotomy, especially at night. The Ivy has lines of "beautiful people" waiting to get into their nightclub, Envy. While just up the street, homeless persons are bedding down for the night. They have their places set at the library entrance, on the post office stairs, on the sidewalks on both sides of the library. I would venture to guess there are more than 30 sleeping in those areas. They are mostly polite, civilized people, down on their luck or unable to function without booze or drugs. Occasionally there is a flare up, fighting over territory or a bite of food, but that would be the exception.
During baseball season, this area is alive with pedestrians, people looking for parking, people looking for places to have dinner before the game. The walk to the ball park is exhilerating for me. I am a huge baseball fan and living this close is perfect for me. The route straight down 10th is easiest and since it is a regular path, the businesses, traffic, parking lots, are familiar territory. When businesses open, others close, if someone seems out of place, I tend to notice.
There are many restaurants, bars, hotels, all within walking distance. When I have visitors, it is easy to give them many choices for places to eat. There are many events, conventions, theatrical performances, concerts, what a great place to be. I live close to the "action" if I want to participate. And, far enough away that the noise is not usually a problem. BUT, there is noise on weekend nights, when the clubs close. The young people head to their cars, singing, dancing, talking very loud, hollering at each other, at 2 AM.
The back second story of the post office is used by Rachel's Women's Center for sleeping. About 20 women gather on the sidewalk waiting to be let in at around 6:30 pm. They talk and can be noisy, but it is early and there are many noises at that time. It is the morning, 6:30 AM, when it can be rather annoying. They are laughing, talking, making their way to the day's destination, often awakening their neighbors.
The fire station is also very close. 9th is a northbound route. Sirens seem loud at first, but somehow it becomes routine. A frequent destination for fire engine, paramedics, ambulance, is the PeachTree Inn, which appears to be a sort of half way house.
The remaining question is what will happen to the neighborhood if people ever move into the hundreds of condominiums currently sitting empty.