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Country or City: Where's The Best Place To Raise A Baby?

By Monica Bielanko |

Is one better than the other?

“Goodbye,” said the country mouse, “You do, indeed, live in a plentiful city, but I am going home where I can enjoy my dinner in peace.

- The City Mouse and the Country Mouse

When Serge and I first got married seven years ago we moved to Brooklyn.

We love New York City, there is no other place in the world like it. It’s so vibrant, and just walking down the street gives you a little buzz. I would constantly giggle to myself. “I’m here! I’m living in New York City!”

Two years later we moved to Utah, my home state.

Manhattan is so expensive, it was time to go. Plus, my heart was telling me children were on the horizon and shuttling babies to and fro in New York City, from my observations, seemed to be an impossibility.

We had Violet here in Utah while living in the suburbs and now, Henry too. But we’ve wanted to move closer to Serge’s family for a long time. They live smack dab in the middle of Pennsylvania. The heart of Amish Country. It’s beautiful. Rolling green hills, quaint hundred-year-old towns, and horses and buggies driven by Amish folks all add to the charm.

My mother-in-law is near retirement age and would love nothing more than to spend time with grandbabies. SCORE! Now we might actually make it to a movie more than once a year. Plus, the prospect of being able to drive to Manhattan in four-ish hours and spend the day (or weekend) thrills me to the tips of my freakishly long toes!

One of the main reasons I wanted to move (aside from all the free child care!) is that I don’t want to raise my kids in Utah. Out here in the yawning maw of suburbia is less than ideal. Lots of white, Mormon folks. No diversity. Strip mall after strip mall made of the same cream and brown stucco and stone.

I don’t want my babies to wait until their late twenties to feel the excitement a big city mainlines into your bloodstream. But I don’t think I could raise children in New York either. Expenses aside, I used to see women with children and bulky strollers on the subway, completely dependent on the kindness of strangers to make it up several flights of stairs. The sidewalks are filled with people who hate strollers. How do Manhattan mamas get babies around in the frigid wind chilled air? What if you life in a four-story walk-up? I look at Natalie, making a go of it in a 300 square foot apartment in Manhattan and I envy her for living in the greatest city on earth. I also don’t know how she does it. I could barely navigate without child and stroller.

I long for a simpler life. I want my kids to grow up playing games on the street with other neighborhood children. I want them to be familiar with farm life, I want them to smell fresh air and swim in lakes. But I also want them to be street savvy. To know how to get around on their own. To feel as comfortable on a city street as a rural dirt road. So I have chosen what seems to me to be the best of both worlds. Slow living in a small Pennsylvania village with excellent proximity to the cultural mecca of America – New York City.

We move in two months.

Questions, questions, questions! Where are you raising your children? Are you happy about it? Would you rather be somewhere else? Why? What is the ideal setting for raising children? I want to hear what you think!

Literally, the best of the both worlds: The City Kid/Country Kid Reading List!

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About Monica Bielanko


Monica Bielanko

Monica Bielanko was raised on the wild frontier of late 1970's Utah. She is a recovering Mormon who married the guitar player of an unknown band. She's been married to her Babble Voices writing partner, Serge Bielanko, for the past nine years. Her personal blog, The Girl Who was in the top ten of last year's Top 50 list. Read bio and latest posts → Read Monica's latest posts →

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36 thoughts on “Country or City: Where's The Best Place To Raise A Baby?

  1. Jessica says:

    Yay for moving to PA! That’s where i live ! Amish country is fun too seeing the horse and buggies driving along the roads you dont see that everywhere :)

    I can’t say which is better the city or country since i’ve never lived in the city w/kids. I do know on our trips to NYC with kids in tow it seemed to be alot of work and like you i dont know how those city mama’s do it. We love where we live and so far the kids seem to love it too. I dont know if there really is an ideal place to raise kiddos it’s just what works for you and your family. I hope you like PA as much as we do. :)

  2. abby says:

    I think Atlanta is the best city in the world to raise kids. I live in the city, but still in a neighborhood that the kids can run up and down the street. They will know how to use public transportation and be used to a variety of different kinds of people. Just an hour from the mountains and two or so to the beach! Very kid friendly.

  3. Melissa says:

    If I had unlimited money, it would Manhattan, no doubt about it. Then we could also have a beach house. :-) Since I most certainly don’t, we live in the burbs, but only a half hour North of the City, in Westchester County. I still commute in every day. There are parks, beaches and backyards, but we can take advantage of the City and all it has to offer. Yes, it’s expensive. We don’t travel very often, or buy pretty things, but we are grateful for the variety of experiences we can have here. Also, we picked a neighborhood where we can walk to things. I wouldn’t be happy having to get in the car for everything.

  4. Z says:

    Sounds like the perfect mix! I’m in NYC now, but no plans to have babies here. Your setup sounds ideal: kids can enjoy the bucolic countryside, but not be immune to city life. I seriously admire the women I see balancing strollers, baby bags, their purses and a cup of coffee. I am not that coordinated :)

    [PS. Long time reader, first time commenter. So excited about your moving news!]

  5. Connie says:

    While we don’t have children just yet, my husband and I bought a house a couple years ago which we intend to stay in for a long time. I think we’re in a good spot: we are in a suburban setting that’s a 45 minute drive from Chicago. The school where our kids will eventually go is just a short walk from our house, our neighborhood is fairly diverse, and there’s an ice cream truck and lots of parks and forest preserves to explore. I agree with you: there is something to be said about enjoying the expanse of a house with a yard while still being close to a major metropolitan place to have fun in.

  6. saffron says:

    We live in the UK. In the county of Kent, smack bang between Canterbury and Dover – (you might of heard of Canterbury Cathedral, also the white cliffs of Dover) We live in the country side, but we are very close to the coast basically, my teenage daughter can cycle to the seaside in an hour if she wants too, its something we did as kids, and I am pleased that my daughter and her friends do so. We also live about 90 minutes from London or a £10 bus ride away. Again my teen goes to London for the day occasionally with her friends as well as with us as a family. France is a 90 minutes ferry ride away. We haven’t got a lot of money but we like to take both of our kids to France for the day a couple of times a a year, have a walk around the markets and go for lunch and then come home, which costs a fortune!!!!! (£200 just for the ferry tickets) but, life is about experiences. I would love to live very close to the beach, but that would cost a fortune, so here is where we have to stay until our daughter finishes school and uni, THEN we might finally have some money and be able to move, just before we have to sort out our sons future.

  7. Sadie says:

    I live in Memphis and this is where I grew up. I don’t have kids yet, but hope for one in the next couple years. And this is likely where I will raise him/her.

    I lived in Colorado until recently- for a few years, on the Western Slope of the Rockies (not far from Aspen). If money was no object, that is where I would raise my children. It’s safe, people know each other, the schools are good; but there’s theatre, music, art… and close to Denver.

  8. Carol says:

    My kids are grown & we raised them where we still live, suburban Philadelphia, the Main Line to be exact. I think it’s perfect….a small village where people know each other, where they gather at the local lunch spot, where the librarian knows your taste in books, where the clerks at the post office or the (one) supermarket greet you by name. On a good traffic day we’re 15 minutes from Center City Philadelphia, double that if the traffic is bad, and we’re only 90 minutes from N.Y. Both our children have chosen to live in large cities…one here, the other in the west. I love the cultural life here & the fact that we were able to expose our children to it. I love the fact that the schools are terrific, that the medical facilities are top-notch. If I had it to do over I wouldn’t change a thing, nor would they.

  9. Katie says:

    I live in an established, old neighborhood within the Baltimore City limits with tree-lined streets and a diverse group of neighbors. Despite what you may see on The Wire, it is a great place to live. Cheaper than DC (or NYC, of course) with lots of family friendly activities/shopping etc. I love it. We can walk to local restaurants/shops and we are a short drive from downtown in one direction and from suburban chains in another (I need my Target). And we have an excellent neighborhood elementary/middle that my kids will be able to walk to. Best of both worlds.

  10. Jenny says:

    Everything in moderation… that’s what I live by. I wouldn’t want to raise my kids in either a big city or a small small town. I also don’t think it’s as simple as picking a particular locale… it’s all about finding the right NEIGHBORHOOD in that place.

    That’s what I did. In Utah. (Utah isn’t as bad as she made it sound, everyone!)

    Not everywhere in Utah is it white stuffy Mormons with no diversity. It’s also not either that or smack-dab downtown. There are some amazing neighborhoods here that are just about the most ideal I’ve found anywhere. I chose to live in one of those. It’s a suburb, but it’s a good 20 minutes to the “city”. It’s also nestled among other like-minded free thinking diverse families, and trees and sidewalks and lots of “play outside” space.

    That’s what I think is ideal. Somewhere where your kid will WANT to go outside and play. And somewhere that a camping trip, river trip, ski resort, city, or BIG city is within a days drive. That’s why I chose Utah.

    However, Pennsylvania sounds absolutely heavenly! I can’t wait to see photos of your new hometown and upcoming adventures!

  11. Adina says:

    We’re in Manhattan, just about to have our second, and for us for now, it works. We live in south Harlem, 5 blocks from Central Park and 2 from Morningside, and love the diversity and convenience of our neighborhood. I don’t mind the close quarters, but am fearful of the school search process. We do have a car, and get out to the ‘burbs to visit our folks, and get our Target/mall/backyard BBQ fixes then. As others said, moderation. :)

  12. Starla says:

    I was born and raised in Inner London, and still live there. Am very much a city gal because of that, and living in the country with it’s small and narrow mindedness, would do my head in. Of course, as an adult, I can escape to the quaint English country side for weekend breaks, to clear away the cobwebs, see the sky etc, but I could never live there. Not until I am much, much older. I don’t have kids, but I think London is a lot more child friendly then NYC is, so I would be happy to raise any future kids here too.

  13. Meredith says:

    I have always lived in the suburbs so I’m not sure how it would be to raise kids in the city or country, but for us the burbs work! Right now we live 30 minutes from San Francisco and so we can get our city fix easily. We have moved several times in the past few years and we just always end up finding a house outside the city. If we didn’t have kids I think we would definitely live in the city, but I HATE dealing with big crowds everyday so I’m not sure how long I would last in one.

  14. Cassidy says:

    I don’t have children yet but, my experience growing up on a little farm right outside a small town in Northern California was amazing. I wouldn’t trade it for anything. The same kids I went to preschool with were the ones I graduated high school with. Plus, many of our parents were good friends as well. It made for some really great parties. The town felt like a big family in a way, yet you still have your privacy. You know the names of all the shop owners on main street. You automatically wave if you pass another vehicle along a country road, whether you recognize them or not. Weekends are spent down at the tressle, tubing down the river, playing guitar around the campfire, or at sleep in the back of your truck parties in a country field with CCR blaring. Always surrounded by friends, always having a good time.

    You also learn how to work hard. I grew up chopping wood, baling hay, and too many more things to list. As far as being able to survive in a city, in my experience country kids are some of the most independent and resourceful people I’ve known. I absolutely love visiting SF, NY and I lived in LA. No problems there.

    My husband (he’s from the same place) and I live in the ‘burbs of East SLC right now. I really can’t complain since we have gorgeous views of the mountains but, we cannot wait to get back to Nor Cal and have our own land and more room to breathe. I think you’ll really love small town life, especially once you get to know the community. I’m happy for you and can’t wait until it’s my and my husband’s time to do the same!

  15. Noelle says:

    I have no kids, but I do think the moderation comment is key. I grew up 6 hours from Seattle, and the close-minded-ness just about killed me. I have a hard time going back to visit my aunt and uncle (who are my old family still there), as the fundies kind of freak me out.
    I do want to raise kids where people know each other and where they can play on the street. But I cannot see that I’d be able to afford it here in LA, or by the beach, where I live now.
    Who knows, maybe I’ll marry rich and won’t have to choose!
    I think you’ve done well with the location!

  16. kate says:

    I spent my first 9 years growing up in a log cabin in the woods. Playing outside, morning to night, swinging from trees, catching frogs, exploring the woods, riding horses, walking a half mile (by myself!) to my friend’s house…it was, truly, ideal. Then we moved to a “city” of 100k and it was great too: all the after-school activities, movies, malls etc.

    Now, we are raising our daughter in a different city of roughly 150k, we are in a great old neighborhood a block from her school. There is plenty of nature nearby for hiking, kayaking, biking, horseback riding etc. Plus
    Gay Pride parades, concerts in the park, interesting friends, diversity (for real this time) etc. We’re a 2-4 hours from Canada and Montana and Seattle. This feels ideal for us.

    My point is (and I do have one) is that for the most part, wherever you are can be ideal, depending on what you make of it. I think central PA will be fabulous for your family because your kiddos will get to have authentic relationships with their grandparents (and crazy uncle Dave) AND they’ll experience country living AND you can get down to NYC for all it has to offer.

    Can’t wait to go along for the ride!

  17. Suebee says:

    We live in a suburb of Rochester, NY, that is semi-rural. We’re equidistant from downtown (museums, sports stadiums, theaters) and woods and horses. We have wildlife in our yard, and have access to some fabulous parks, both local and state. Though we’re 7 hours or so from New York City (I grew up in rural NJ about 2 hours from the city), we’re only about four from Toronto, which is equally vibrant, and close enough for a weekend. So I am VERY happy about where we chose to settle down and raise a family. :D Closer to culture than I was growing up, but rural enough to appreciate it.

  18. A.R. says:

    I just moved to Phoenix after living in the heart of several East Coast cities, including Toronto. Within a few months, my husband and I found out that I was pregnant, and though Phoenix seems to be a great place for prenatal care and raising an infant (strollers, diaper bags, et al.), I wouldn’t want to raise my kids here with values and a lifestyle so different from my own East coast upbringing. I had a difficult time adjusting to the sprawly, homogeneous suburban lifestyle here, where everything seems the same. My husband and I are both worldly urban types, and I want my kids to be exposed the diversity and open-mindedness a big city offers–even if it means fighting the crowds.

  19. kar says:

    i am about 3 mos away from having my baby.. i live at the jersey shore, the greatest place i know..due to daddy’s job, baby and i will be moving to queens after she is born!!
    i have never lived in the city, the idea has always scared as well intrigued me.. i grew up in a country area and have spent most of my adult life here at the shore.
    since this is my first, i dont have anything to compare.. what i do know is that my baby and i will grow up in the city together.. we will learn how to get around, we will find things to do and we will meet new people, all firsts for both of us..
    both sets of grandparents and most friends of ours live at the shore.. so, we will be those people i always complain about and spend our weekends here.. i feel this will give my baby the best of both worlds!!
    i cant wait to experience the city life, i just hope it is friendly to us :)

  20. Lauren says:

    I agree with Jenny — it’s less about the city/state/country and more about the neighborhood. We have lived in South Carolina, Georgia (Atlanta), California (Long Beach), suburban Seattle, Utah, and Virginia (Charlottesville and Arlington). All these places had pros and cons related to weather, culture, cost of living, family friendliness, educational opportunities, and more. And I learned that anywhere can be a great place to live, you just have to be in the right neighborhood. The one that fits your family’s lifestyle. My favorite place, so far, was Arlington. We lived in a fabulous neighborhood near the Pentagon. It was a wonderfully diverse little community, with great schools, parks, and a library, and we had DC in our backyard. All within walking distance. The cost of living, though, ended up being prohibitive. My least favorite place was Long Beach; expensive, polluted, with that LA pace of life I couldn’t keep up with. However, I still have tons of friends in Southern California that would never leave.

    We are moving back to Seattle in a few weeks, probably to settle. I hope we picked the right place for us!

  21. jen says:

    we just moved back to West TN this month, and baby is due next month. we are in the very small town where my husband grew up, and his family lives five minutes away. i’m excited to have a safer, slower environment, but we will be taking many trips with our kids. chicago is our favorite place (and where we got married), and we want our kids to experience exactly what you’re talking about…independent and ready for new, fast-paced fun. both city mouse and country mouse have it good.

  22. Laura B says:

    We moved our kids to Napa, CA from the Silicon Valley in 1998. They grew up playing in creeks and vineyards and are ending out their teen years being “bored” with wandering downtown and the lack of madness that comes with large cities (and a graduating class of less than 100 stds because they go to a specialized nerd school).

    The best part? San Francisco is 45 minutes away and I have them there all the time. They can identify each neighborhood (Mission District, Union Square, The Haight, Ocean Beach, etc) and we head that way as it fits their mood. It is the BEST of both worlds and I couldn’t be happier with our decision… so I’m just as stoked for all of you!

  23. Hanni says:

    I grew up on the north shore of Lake Huron in upper Michigan. It was sparsely populated – no one lived on the same side of our road for miles! I had 23 people in my graduating class, and though I wouldn’t want to live there now, I loved it then.

    Now, we live about an hour away from where I grew up. We’re 15 minutes from town, and though I sometimes wish we lived only a minute or two out, I absolutely love it where we are. We’re surrounded by maple trees and make maple syrup every year, we have a huge fenced in yard for our three Goldens to roam, we raise our own chickens and grow fruit and veggies, and we have room to do whatever else we may want to do. I love that my daughter can sit right outside the front door and make dirt castles and ponds and roads. I wouldn’t want to raise her anywhere else unless it was similar to this.

    But I DO love the city…the energy, the people watching, the food, the sensory overload. The thing is, even growing up in the sheltered place I did, I can still go to London or NYC and be totally comfortable and find my way around with no problem. Would I want to raise my child there, though? No, I wouldn’t. I can’t wait until she’s old enough to appreciate a trip to the city – we can visit and explore, and then…then we get to come home.

  24. Tricia L says:

    I’m in the suburbs of Philly. I absolutely love the fact that I’m less than 2 hours from just about anything. My daughter and I love taking the train to NYC to see a show….we’ll hit the poconos for skiing in the winter, and lake life in the summer…jersey shore for the sun, sand, and boardwalk…and lancaster/amish country when we want to get away from it all. PA is awesome.

  25. Natalie says:

    Ahhhh, the question. The Question! We’re really loving the city (so far) but in full disclosure, when I got back from visiting Portland family, I had crazy City Depression. The only way I make it here day-to-day is knowing it is not permanent, and that Huck will most likely be in the suburbs well (WELL) before middle school. PA seems like a good middle-ground. Utah, well . . . I do not blame you for moving is all I’ll say. (I think once we leave the city I am going for the opposite end of the spectrum — a farm house on some acreage less than 30 miles from the nearest big city. This probably doesn’t actually exist.)

  26. Marie says:

    We live outside a very small town on a country road in MN, and I hate it because the traffic is pretty heavy (car every 5-10 minutes) and everyone drives 60+ miles an hour. If we lived in the country and were more than 200 feet from the road, it would be a great place to have kids, but my 3 year old will never be allowed to ride her bike on the “street” alone and her precious pets keep getting hit. I like the farm life, don’t get me wrong, but being so close to the road and with no sidewalks even in town it’s hard to do anything but drive. We’re about an hour’s drive from Minneapolis so we can go visit and use sidewalks and cross at stoplights, so with more land or a fence I trusted it would be great.

  27. Danielle says:

    We live in LA and love it, but are for sure freaked about raising our kids here. There are advantages and disadvantages to living everywhere, but find a place you can be happy and go for it.

  28. Sara says:

    We live in Morris County, New Jersey and while it is super expensive…it is also only about 40 minutes from the city. There is so much to do in this area and I live down the street from a horse farm in what I would call semi-suburbia. NJ isn’t quite like its stereotype even though there are plenty pseudo-snookys lurking, it is really a beautiful place. Lots of kid activities, great schools, nice neighborhoods, culture, diversity, bagel and great pizza. My daughter is still too young to really take advantage of all it has to offer and we may be moving to CT or MA but at least CT is still in the tri-state and MA has Boston.

    PA is great too. Philly has a lot of culture and Lancaster is pretty family oriented. Many of my friends have moved to PA to take advantage of the lower taxes, less expensive housing but still experience being near NJ and NYC. I also have friends living in Hoboken and Jersey City with small children and they absolutely love it.
    I’ve lived in several states throughout my life Maryland, Minnesota and California. The Northeast just has a hold on my heart I suppose because I love the history of the area and of course New York City!

  29. Meagan says:

    We live in the Cleveland area, expecting our first in June so I can’t yet vouch for how good a place it is to raise kids. It has a lot of promise though… we were able to buy an awesome house for not too expensive, on an acre of land, in a safe area with excellent schools. We are looking forward to growing much of our own food with our children (we are even looking into making maple syrup and raising ducks) but we are only about a half hour from some fantasic urban benifits such as a wonderful theater district, world ranked orchestra, fantastic free art museum and lots of other affordable museums, an amazing park system, huge artist communities and super food. (Cleveland does have some very real problems, but it’s got a lot more going for it than people think.) Like I said, I won’t really know for a few years yet, but I think we’ve got the best of both worlds!

  30. Samantha says:

    I very much enjoyed your blog on city life or country life. I am in a similar situation myself. I live on long island NY with my husband and we are expecting our first baby in august. This is the first grandchild on both sides of our families so it is very exciting for everyone. Unfortunately, it is too expense to live in NY being a young couple with a new baby on the way. My husband and I were deciding to move to Illinois. His home state. I want to make sure I am making the right decision about moving, not just because it’s more affordable but it’s a better life for my baby. Please help with any advice you can. Thank you!

  31. Jody T. says:

    I think parents should raise their children wherever they’re happiest….because happy parents tend to have happy children. I grew up in a mostly rural/burgeoning suburban breakfast community just south of Silicon Valley. I had a lot of fun growing up there, but it was a bit too much sheltered. If you wanted any culturally diverse experiences outside of the bowling alley, church, one of the 4 fast food chain restaurants, or two larger strip malls, then you had to take a 30 minute ride north to San Jose, or a 90 minute ride to San Francisco. I moved to the Los Angeles area nearly 12 years ago, married here nearly 10 years ago, and hubby and I had a little girl nearly 2 years ago. We have a home and live in Pasadena, where I think we get the best of everything -cultured town history (we live one block from the Rose Parade route), big city conveniences, and accessibillity to all that life in SoCal offers between the beach and the mountains. It also helps that we live in a lovely neighborhood bordered by the prestigious Cal Tech university, one of LA’s oldest junior colleges and The Huntington Library & Gardens. And I’ve noticed there are a lot of other 30-somethings in our neighborhood with kids around our daughter’s age. I think we’ll be happy here for quite some time.

  32. Nicki Yoder says:

    We live in delaware n its a pretty good state for children. We live on a farm but the town of dover is 5 minute away. so were in the most perfect spot in the country but not too far from town. then again delaware isnt that big of a state but my daughter gets the best of both worlds

  33. Roz says:

    I really feel like everyone should raise their kids where they are most comfortable and a place where they can be productive, happy and safe citizens. I grew up in a ‘somewhat’ rural area and then as an adult, moved to Wyoming. The least populated state in our nation. It was the best decision of my life. Yes, it’s not as diverse as other places, but I love it. Wyoming takes a specific type of person, which I believe is why there’s only 500k people in the whole state! My husband and I had our first baby in Wyoming and I’m so proud of that. We’ve since moved a couple hours away from where we had our son to a small town(as in 1000 people, which is large for us). We are living in town for a while so it’s close to my husband’s job. We plan on moving out of town in the next year or two. We will be over 30 miles from any type of town or school and will be ranching. Our nearest neighbors will be miles away. This is what we want. My husband grew up in a two room school and we like this life (and no, we aren’t old. My husband graduated in 2001, our son is 6 months). The school has closed in the last couple years, so when our son gets to school age we will have to make a decision to send him on a bus for a 30+ mile ride or to homeschool. We are leaning towards homeschooling. This is the life we are very happy with and love. Like I said, everyone should live where they are comfortable and productive. If we (ranchers) didn’t live our life like this and do what we do, there wouldn’t be any beef. If people didn’t live in cities there wouldn’t be cooprorations and beautiful museums for us to visit. I don’t think there is one place that can be labeled BEST. Just places that can be labeled BETTER for each family’s needs.

  34. christine says:

    I grew up in Philly. I live in CT now and work in Manhattan. There are things about growing up as a city kid that you learn, and things you are clueless about that happen seemingly in the rest of the country. Country- Like that you can leave your outgoing mail in the mailbox with the little flag up and the postman will take it for you?!!? A revelation. City-Like to not look back or around you if there’s shouting or a commotion- don’t be part of a ruckus, keep walking! I’m 34 and just got my first driver’s license in November because I’ve never needed it and there was no driver’s ed in Philly and I can tell you exactly where to get on the subway to get out in front of the stairway of any stop of the 1,2,3,4,5,6,N,R,W lines and yes, I just got my license, so what, harrumph. At any rate, I am glad I live an hour away from Manhattan, so that my kids will be able to experience the city, whilst living in a home bigger than a lunchbox.

  35. Katie says:

    White people in Utah vs. white people in Pennsylvania? Both are states notorious for their lack of affection for diversity. Seems you traded the same for the same. Curious why you didn’t mention Philly as a scene for your city fix. I can imagine why.

  36. MonicaBielanko says:

    True enough about the diversity in the country. I guess it’s the Mormonism I’m mostly excited about escaping. But to me, the country is infinitely better than the suburbs of Utah. Not sure what you mean about Philly, I like it well enough (Serge LOVES it) but I lived in NYC and absolutely fell in love with it.

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