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On Lakeland, FL

Lakeland is one of those cities that is full to the brim of ghetto and hickville….ness with that one tiny little bright spot in the middle that is so beautiful it wipes away any negative memories about the place. That tiny spot is Downtown.

Today I want to share with you the beauty of what has, over the last two years, come to be called Home. They’re only phone pictures, and really there aren’t many good ones of any particularly iconic places, but I’ve picked out the best for you.

IMG_20121009_184346This is my favorite spot in Lakeland (just ignore that guy on the right… I don’t know who he is. O.O). This photo was taken at Lake Mirror, right in the middle of Downtown. The lake was aptly named as it’s never looked anything but silvery and beautiful. A few ducks in live in it, but really, I just like to go there because the water itself is breathtaking as as well as the pretty architecture. (Behind me is a great, old, rusty bridge/underpass. My favorite spot in Lakeland! If only I’d thought to TURN AROUND and shoot a picture of it.)

IMG_20121009_181613Downtown itself is as lovely as Lake Mirror. Thrift Shops and quaint antique stores dot the heart of the city frequently, tucked around one-of-a-kind, family owned restaurants that will blow any chain out of the water.

IMG_20131227_161728Lake Morton, the other lake adjacent to downtown is home to hundreds of swans, ducks, geese, and… possibly mixes of these. These particular birds, we think, are swans. However they have a little bit of the goose beak going on. My mother has dubbed them Gwans.

IMG_20121009_190134Last year I thought about taking the train, instead of a plane, to visit my friends in Houston. I love trains! It would be an adventure! However, when I found out that this particular line would take me up to Boston before turning around and heading for Texas (a four day journey in total) and would be just as expensive as an aeroplane ticket, I quickly tossed the idea. But that doesn’t mean I don’t want to come back and ride this train some time!

IMG_20130916_193223Moments like these are too beautiful and precious to NOT step out of work for a moment to capture what you can, even if the light poles are in your way. I know the sun sets all over the world, but the sun setting wherever it is that you call “home” is always the most beautiful.

If you’re ever driving through Florida, it’s worth a quick stop to tour downtown. Maybe stop for dinner at Palace Pizza. Then you can walk across the street and pick up some Magic cards at the comic shop! We also have a big party in Munn Park every “First Friday” (of the month) and Florida Southern, a college just down the way, has architecture designed by the very famous Frank Lloyd Wright!

I really do love Lakeland. I never thought it would be where I would spend the rest of my life, but I’m grateful I got to know the place. It’s a neat town with neat people and neat places, even if the ones I’ve captured here aren’t the ones I really want to write about. I’ve had a good two years here.

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