My brother and sister still live in Norfolk, and I went down for the weekend to visit. I also registered for the inaugural Harbor Lights 5k, so I was looking forward to running the fun downtown course. I was actually registered for the "Get Lit" challenge to run the 5k and then the half marathon the following day, but some health issues put the kibosh on that idea. I arrived Thursday night, and on Friday I headed to visit my old city stomping grounds at City Hall.
Going to Norfolk City Hall feels like a time warp. Everything is the same, yet everything is completely different. I have a number of former co-workers who still work there, and I had fun surprising them. We chatted for a while, and then I had a meeting with the mayor, my former boss. After we caught up we talked a lot about the many projects happening in the city from light rail to new anchor institution buildings like the courthouse and downtown library. The list of large projects either in progress or on deck was staggering. Norfolk inspired my love for cities, and it continues to inspire me to this day. It makes me realize that getting things done in communities requires vision. If you have a visionary who is willing to think big and brush off the naysayers, you can really accomplish a lot. Downtown Norfolk is a prime example.
|Light rail outside Norfolk City Hall|
On Saturday morning I was downtown early for the Harbor Lights 5k. It was chillier than I thought it would be - around 28 degrees - and I was not dressed appropriately for the weather. It's ironic given that I live in Michigan, and I have tons of cold weather running gear. It was a sunny morning, however, and I loved being in Town Point Park 2700 of my closest friends.
|Downtown Norfolk. Loving the new light rail stop in the center of town.|
|The USS Wisconsin Memorial|
|With my niece after the race in the Selden Arcade|
Sunday was a lazy, relaxing day hanging out with my siblings and parents. I was sad to see the weekend come to an end. Being in Norfolk is always good for my soul and my city inspiration. I spent a lot of quality time with the fam and ran an incredible 5k. My heart was also filled by the ingenuity of everything happening in the City of Norfolk. I've lived in Michigan for nearly a decade, but Norfolk occupies some valuable real estate in my cityphile heart. It always feels good to come home to Norfolk.
|One of Norfolk's mermaids downtown|