Wednesday, July 23, 2008

A City of Contrasts

Today we rode the bus downtown, because the Metro was having issues, due to a cracked rail. Uh-huh. A cracked rail. Ninety minute delays. So we took the bus.

The bus took us through some areas that looked horribly depressed. Nice row houses, painted purple, with psychic palm readers and exterminators doing business from behind bars and gratings. Moms sitting on the stoops with little kids still using sippy cups, with their shorts hanging off their butts. And not one of the moms grabbing them and pulling them up.

A lot of bars and mesh gratings and boarded-up windows, and cracks in the sidewalk you could drop a stroller down.

So the center of town is full of marble and granite, and statues and lawns and rose gardens and restaurants that don't even put the prices on the menus. People walking around in thousand dollar suits. Shoes and purses worth hundreds. Valets parking Mercedes and BMW autos for people too rich to bother, and just to the north, there is this incredible wasteland.

Is it like that all around DC, or just on the north side of all the tourist stuff?

I just don't know what to think. I've seen that kind of decay in every city I've ever lived in, but this shocked me, somehow.

I guess I'm naive. I expected people to look after the capitol of this country, and the people who live here, a bit better.

1 comment:

  1. DC? You are totally right. There is the ultra rich parts, and then the war zone. If the city werent so small I imagine that it would definitely be ranking up there in the highest murder rates. Some parts are downright SCARY.

    They rank 7th in the most dangerous city and they dont even have 600,000 people living there.