Post Number: 820
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 8:17 pm: || |
I'm in the last stages of my big move overseas, going to Germany. I'm going home, after 15 years in the US, 6 1/2 years of them spent in Detroit. My 24-year old son is here right now to help me with that. He moved to LA 2 years ago for work but swears that he will move back to Detroit because this is THE city for him, the only city that's so cool in the US. But then, he's only 24. Even a year ago, I would not have thought about going back home to Europe. Things change, that's the point.
Today, we went places together that we both have frequented individually over the years and have said our goodbyes. We both received hugs and even gifts, unexpectedly. And lots of Good Lucks, God Bless and I'll miss you. Apparently we're both the most sweetest people this city has ever seen. These kind of gestures is what makes me sentimental, now that I'm leaving. And I am not leaving because of Detroit's shortcomings, although there is plenty of hard feelings in that regard too. More about that later, I especially want to express my feelings about the negative effects of gentrification as me and my neighbors in the Hibbard building on E. Jefferson are experiencing them right now.
Post Number: 842
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 8:25 pm: || |
Post Number: 238
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 8:34 pm: || |
Ghetto_butterfly, there is turmoil in your words. What happened?
What is going on at that building right now?
Edit: I was just informed the building is for sale? Oh no, is that true? What's going on?
(Message edited by Sean_Of_Detroit on May 03, 2008)
Post Number: 821
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 9:16 pm: || |
Sean - that's news to me, the building is for sale? This would explain some things. This is what's going here: about 1 year ago, new management came in. Shortly afterwards, rents went up between 10 - 30% for everybody. One year later, rent went up Again! These are tenants who have lived here for many years, my 6 1/2 years are probably considered "new tenant". When I protested about the steep raise in rent all of a sudden, I was made promises of upgrades and renovations that never happened. The argument was that "Detroit is coming back and you'll just have to pay for the privilege of living here". Same for my neighbors. But the immediate area north of Jefferson is ghetto and very unsafe. Also, security has been very compromised as of late and management has done nothing to improve the situation. I was robbed in the "secure" parking lot last summer but nothing has been done to prevent incidents like that, despite of promises of management to take action. Last weekend, several cars were vandalized in the "secure" parking lot because for the millionst time, the remote-controlled gate was broken. Many long-time residents, and I'm talking between 10 to 20 years, are fed up and talk about leaving. And it seems that management is only encouraging this tendency. This is very sad to me and only shows that the effects of gentrification - although positive in many ways - have also a lot of negative results.
I really loved living here, art deco architecture, lots of space, great views - exactly my style, but if I wouldn't be moving out anyway, I'd move regardless.
Post Number: 37
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 9:51 pm: || |
So the choice is between 1 apartment building or moving to Germany? There's a lot your not telling us!
Post Number: 242
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 9:57 pm: || |
I know it's bad Ghetto_butterfly. But, there will always be a place for you here in the D!
Post Number: 1592
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 9:57 pm: || |
Europe is in a state of major inflation...the Euro is poised to fall against the USD...not a good time to return to the Fatherland...there must be other reasons other than economic.
Post Number: 1246
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 10:05 pm: || |
I hope you keep in touch with us after you get to Germany. It would be interesting to hear about your new life.
Post Number: 822
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 10:10 pm: || |
OK, so I named my first post "part 1" because I wasn't done yet. Thank you for your interest. I will elaborate over time, I just don't have the patience to write a novel. And that's what it seems to me, saying my goodbyes and expressing my respects to this city in a decent way and honoring it.
Why Germany? I got an excellent job offer, working for a company in the city of Dortmund (which a friend of mine who is from there calls it the Detroit of Germany), in my very limited and highly specialised area of expertise.
Also, I am from Europe and honestly, I am getting sick of the US mentality of wars, entitlement and gun worshipping.
Besides, anywhere in Europe you will find historic buildings plentyfull, one of my major interests.
Post Number: 823
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 10:18 pm: || |
Thank you all for your kind comments. I definitely will stay in touch via this website and check on the progress of my former hometown.
Post Number: 824
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 10:23 pm: || |
My son vows to retire in the D (in 40 years or so) if that's any consolation and some kind of legacy I left
Post Number: 4721
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 10:24 pm: || |
Good luck, Ghetto_butterfly. Try to keep up with Dyes.
I sympathize and totally hear what you're saying about your building, but if I was in that situation I'd just stick it to my landlord (who is not doing anything wrong--except probably overplaying his/her hand) by leaving. I have the same tastes as you it seems, and would hate to leave a good apartment, but it's a big city and there are plenty of great places to live that you'd hate to miss out on. But that goes for the entire country and world, indeed. I plan to move around a lot, because that is my mindset. I don't blame you for wanting to go live in another great place...again, good luck!
Post Number: 2095
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 10:53 pm: || |
Whatever is happening at the Hibbard Apts, it doesn't sound good, but it's not gentrification.
Post Number: 150
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 10:58 pm: || |
I would think that gentrification and the city of Detroit would be an oxymoron .
Post Number: 2048
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 11:01 pm: || |
Ghetto_butterfly, what exactly did you mean by your gentrification mention?
Post Number: 2049
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 11:02 pm: || |
"I would think that gentrification and the city of Detroit would be an oxymoron."
No, it's already happening.
What I do think will be an oxymoron is economics and Detroit.
Post Number: 723
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 11:04 pm: || |
I don't know if you remember me; but Jeff introduced us several years ago and we had the best conversation about the Hibbard. I'm sorry I didn't get to know you better. I wish you well in this next stage of your life and I hope you'll remember the good things about your time here in Detroit.
Post Number: 244
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 11:21 pm: || |
Good luck Ghetto_Butterfly. Please talk kindly of your home while your over there. If I can say so, Detroit (at least in my opinion) is not as ignorant as some other parts of our beautiful country. We aren't perfect, but, ah never mind, it's just to hard to explain.
It always has felt to me that we are fighting a war in this city. It's not really a war, but it takes the same mental state as someone who is in battle. Not everyone wants to do that forever, and that's fine. Then there are those that can't. If you are ever one of those people, I can only say one thing; If you run out of fire, but you still want to fight, then maybe you need to retreat. Retreat, regroup, refuel, and go again.
We can't win every battle, and if your a casualty from one of our loses... I'm sorry. It's true when the white flag is flown, no one has won the war. However, We will continue to fight in your honor, we will.
Someone mentioned in that old Op-Ed topic that each one of us is in a cycle of hitting a cross roads. A Point where we can choose to leave. One road leads to guaranteed victory. Theatre road fades of into the desert horizon. Don't forget that there is a gas station at that intersection. Sometimes it's hidden by the bushes and rocks, you really have to look to find it. The short route might be the best route. The guarantee it will bring with the happiness. Although, one must wonder why the gas station is even there? Just something to think about.
Thank you for putting in your time. There will always be a place in Detroit for you. I keep calling Detroit your home, because home is where your heart is. Even if it's just a piece of your heart (you can have more than one). So this is at least one of your homes, right?
Although maintenance is always going to be required, there is a end to this war. I don't know when. If it does happen in our lifetime, and someday you hear Detroit calling your heart back, then please at least consider it.
There's always a place for you in Detroit.
Come back soon.
(I look forward to reading part 2)
Post Number: 4791
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 11:34 pm: || |
Happy to hear you got a good job GB, sorry to lose you. You have brought a lot of interesting context to the forum with your Dutch-German background perspective. Give our regards to the Ruhr Gebiet.
Of course you can never leave with the internet, so we look forward to you joining our sizeable 'foreign correspondent' membership and hearing your takes on your new-old place.
At least this explains why you were selling the Jetta in the DYES classifieds.
It was great to have been able to meet you in person and I wish you the best of luck on your move.
Post Number: 6765
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 11:48 pm: || |
Ghetto-Butterfly, from Belgium to Detroit to Germany...
I enjoyed our chat last summer at the Forum Picnic... God bless you, and I wish you all the best. Have a "Dortmunder-Union Bier" and toast the forum!
Post Number: 7737
|Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2008 - 11:49 pm: || |
Best of wishes as you start life anew across the pond.
Post Number: 6626
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 8:11 am: || |
All the best GB.
Have a safe trip, and I wish you only the best. I am glad that I had the chance to meet you a few times.
Post Number: 466
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 8:27 am: || |
Oh I know the feeling... I am saying goodbye to Warszawa for good. This is my last week here and it is so bittersweet. So many memories and friends and loves and hurts. I will miss the place.
Good luck with your move and always keep Detroit in your heart.
Post Number: 245
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 9:49 am: || |
I just made the move from Germany to Detroit. All of the things you will miss about Detroit will be replaced with the things that you will miss about Germany in the future. That is, when you move back here!
Post Number: 652
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 10:03 am: || |
I'll miss your posts. My brother worked for GM in Frankfort. Free house. Swimming pool in the basement. Russian guards on the border...
Drive like a bat out of hell on the autobahn in the rain. You'll love it! It's like I-275!
Post Number: 110
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 3:27 pm: || |
Schalke 04 forever!
At least you'll be in the home of one of the best beers in the world. I could go for a Dortmunder right now.
I many ways, I envy you. I love Gelsenkirchen, in the Ruhr Gebiet near Dortmund and Essen.
Post Number: 47
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 4:39 pm: || |
Oafveederschnitzl! (Or however you say goodbye in German!)
And when you get over there, tell those Germans to stop sending their cars here. We have enough!
We just lost another good one, Kwame!
Post Number: 1413
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 4:55 pm: || |
Have a safe trip and let us know when you arrive. Good luck with your new job.
Post Number: 825
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 5:40 pm: || |
Retroit - it's Auf Wiedersehen, which means To see again. But I will be eating Schnitzel in Germany for sure - and drink Dortmunder Bier.
I plan on coming back for visits.
As I said, my friend Sebastian, who has spent the last 2 years in the Detroit area and just now returned, calls Dortmund the Detroit of Germany. Maybe I will be able to see similarities and write about them here. Him and I are both interested in urban exploration and I showed him many of the ruins of Detroit, the Packard plant for example really fascinated him. Also, the Lee Plaza and of course the grandest of all ruins, the MCD. I have lots of original photographs of Detroit landmarks, all of which will decorate the walls of my new apartment over there.
Post Number: 826
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 6:03 pm: || |
By the way, several events have led to my moving to Dortmund, for those who are curious. If it was only the building situation as described earlier, I'd simply move to another place - in Detroit. But also, 2 years ago my then 22-year old son and my only kid moved to LA for work and made me suddenly an empty-nester. I have to admit that it was not easy to deal with it. There is no husband and I have no family here, they are all in various places in Europe. Also, all of my friends (mainly Germans who had come here temporarily for work reasons) have moved back there. Then, last November, my company, owned by Daimler and located at the Detroit Diesel facility near Telegraph on I-96 was sold to another company and I was forced to transfer to the new company, located in Novi. I've hated every minute there so far and the commute is gruesome. I enjoyed greatly to work for my former company, my commute was easy, my colleagues great, my work interesting. But after the sale, many of my former colleagues at the former headquarters in Unna - displeased of the new company (a German family-owned business), near Dortmund left and joined a new joint venture created by an Indian OEM for Commercial Vehicles. That's when they called me, asking if I was interested to join them and made me a really great offer, working in the same field as I had in the past 4 years which is emission reduction/aftertreatment for diesel engine powered commercial vehicles and busses. So all of this combined made my decision to go, who could blame me?
Post Number: 12602
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 6:19 pm: || |
No blame, nor guilt...but we WILL miss you, G_b.
Even those rare chance crossings at the Market.
I can never see a rosy sunset and not think of your description and pictures from your apartment window.
At least you won't suffer another American motorist, and those you DO cross paths with will pass in the proper lane!
Please do keep us up on your travels.
Post Number: 728
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 6:26 pm: || |
G_b, we've had a couple of run-ins over the years, but you will be missed by this Detroiter-in-exile. Take care & Godspeed.
Post Number: 827
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 6:58 pm: || |
English, I wouldn't call it run-ins, just different opinions which is what discussions are all about, right? I've always liked reading your very intellectual posts, especially on Black issues since I needed and wanted to be educated on those matters, being probably the most "white" person here due to the fact that I've spent the majority of my life in an all-white environment in Belgium and then in an all-black neighborhood in Detroit. Lots to be learned in regards to this culture and I did learn and appreciate a lot of it.
Post Number: 828
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 7:12 pm: || |
Pete - I thought that is Borussia Dortmund?
Post Number: 829
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 7:20 pm: || |
Gannon - just for you, here is one of the more dramatic sunset pics I took out of my kitchen window
Post Number: 8594
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 9:29 pm: || |
You'll be missed.
I'll keep checking to see if you've added to those intriguing artworks that you have so masterfully produced.
Sad to see you go, but am happy for you in taking another step in your interesting life.
One question though. Have those Euro-bikers been warned you're coming back?
Hope our paths cross again, my friend.
Post Number: 831
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 9:53 pm: || |
Jams, no new art work, due to the fact that my old computer (just now having been replaced with a brand new laptop) couldn't handle the massive data and no up-to-date art software like Photoshop has been available to me. Hopefully it will change soon, I plan on making more. In the meantime you can see my art work at http://www.jemonts.deviantart. com/ (sorry, I forgot how to post a link and couldn't find the help page on that).
Post Number: 8596
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 10:05 pm: || |
I've had it bookmarked for several years.
It's fascinating stuff and I've been intrigued by your technique since we talked about it years ago.
I know it must be a crazy time for you, but possibly you might put aside a couple of hours Thursday night for the FSC, you can even choose the place, even Rumours across the street from you could work.
Post Number: 179
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 10:22 pm: || |
Auf Wiedersehen, and if you get a chance, take a trip down the Rhine.
Post Number: 11
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 10:39 pm: || |
GB, Good luck in Germany! Thanks for the gorgeous picture of the D!
Post Number: 12608
|Posted on Sunday, May 04, 2008 - 11:08 pm: || |
Somewhere in there is certainly a muted '42'...the answer to the meaning of life is just over that horizon.
Post Number: 832
|Posted on Monday, May 05, 2008 - 12:45 pm: || |
Gannon - I'm an ultimate hitchhiker of the universe.
More bittersweet memories came to mind while reading the thread about the demolished buildings: the first 2 years or so living here, my friend and I spent weekend after weekend exploring the city, east to west, downtown, everywhere. My major interest in Detroit has always been its beautiful architecture. So oftentimes we would get a paper and look for open houses for sale and pretend to be interested home buyers. This way I have seen many beautiful places from the inside, a condo at Indian Village Manor, a couple of renovated mansions in Brush Park, apartments in various renovated loft buildings such as River Place, the Kay-Wright building and many more. Many times I took pictures and these of course will always be there for me.
Post Number: 902
|Posted on Monday, May 05, 2008 - 2:08 pm: || |
Gb, I don't post here often, but I read religiously everyday. I am originally from Detroit and have been living in Southern Germany now for 3.5 years. I still own my condo in midtown and am desperately trying to figure out my future steps and am having much the same position as you, only in reverse.
I have thoroughly loved living in my small town on Bodensee (Lindau), but a part of my heart is still missing Detroit. I am always passionate about the city (which drives my partner crazy) and I completely get what people see and love about Detroit. That said, we will most likely and sadly not be moving back any time soon. Drankin21 said it truely correct. Germany has many things that will replace those things you miss about Detroit, but honestly, there will still be a hole. I feel it daily.
I wish you all the best and your decision to move is completely understood. I would do the same thing (AM doing the same thing). And when you miss Detroit that much and want to get a similar feel, I say go to Berlin! Berlin is like what Detroit WANTS to be. A "real" city with edge. I saw a T-shirt in Berlin... "Poor, but sexy!" It is soooo true. Detroit could be that, but I think it needs more make-up to reach the right level of sex appeal.
Best of luck and if you're ever gunna make the trip down south, you should look me up!
Post Number: 254
|Posted on Monday, May 05, 2008 - 4:27 pm: || |
Spread your wings Ghetto Butterfly!
Post Number: 210
|Posted on Tuesday, May 06, 2008 - 2:22 pm: || |
Yeah, Vegates tu Frau Butterfly, When I saw that You are in the field You are in, I was most amazed, That is exactly one of the problems that My company is dealing with now, und My dept is trying to comes to terms with, U.L.S.D., idle time, T.B.N. on Cj-4 conventional oil, etc.., anyway being born in Ludwigsafen, grossegaro, rheinland platz, I also understand your other issue. Well to sum it up, I would like to offer You My e-mail and hopefully tap Your wealth of knowledge regarding aftertreatment. And of course I would reciprocate with real world studies on this relating to the transit industry. email@example.com
Post Number: 436
|Posted on Tuesday, May 06, 2008 - 7:02 pm: || |
Auf Wiedersehen, Ghetto Butterfly! Please keep in touch.
Post Number: 838
|Posted on Thursday, May 08, 2008 - 10:06 pm: || |
Today was my last day in Detroit proper. My apartment has been cleaned out this morning and I have now to clean up almost 7 years of dust. My car was sold last week, my stuff shipped last Monday. More bitter-sweet goodbyes to friends and long-time neighbors during the day today, most of whom are moving themselves due to the situation in the building and the decline and crime in the neighborhood. My son and I went to the Detroit Breakfast ... place on Woodward for lunch, then drove around. We eventually took Van Dyke out to Warren, then to Novi where I will be staying for the next 2 weeks. Being in the burbs these last days is easier for me, because all I have to do is look around the neighborhood and know this is NOT what I want in comparison to the D.
Post Number: 315
|Posted on Thursday, May 08, 2008 - 10:30 pm: || |
Ghetto_Butt. (I assume youve already been given that name at least a few times just cause its funny)
I dont know you, Havnt been keepin up on who posts what but heard some kind words about you today from some folks I respect.
Live it rich over there in Dieterville. Man I want to get on that Autobaun,with Gannon in the passenger seat. My one working eye might do the job? I think Gannon likes to live dangerously.
Ever need a tour of the packard plant, I Am Your Man. I know every square inch.
Wish I knew you better, fly safe, take care.