ATL Shawty: It Was A Different World

Over the last two weeks I have spent more time living out of a bag than I have at home and this past weekend was the first time I was home on a Saturday in two weeks. It was weird. Both being away and being home. While you read a bit about my Arizona adventure, the very next weekend I hopped on a plane to Atlanta with my dad to see my brother receive his master’s degree. It was a proud sister moment and I was happy to make the trip even though back to back traveling isn't my favorite thing to do. But hey it gave me an excuse to break in my new favorite sweats and keep using my new tote so yeah, don't mind if I do! 


Oddly enough, I happened to be scrolling FB late Thursday night and saw my NYC bestie had posted a photo of her and her sisters. I saw in the comments it said she was in Atlanta and I immediately lost my shit and subsequently startled my father with my excitement. I haven’t seen Pie since I went to visit NYC last summer for Blogging While Brown so this was a real treat. Of course I began to send a flurry of texts immediately to confirm we were indeed going to be in the same city for a few days in hopes we could hook up. Excited doesn’t even begin to cover what I felt. My trip just got that much more exciting.

The sad truth is, I haven’t been back to Atlanta since I left, 13 years ago. We packed up the car + truck and I pretty much never looked back. I flew through once about 5 years ago but that was it. It’s weird when you think about it since Atlanta was my home for so many wonderful years. It’s where I went to college, found myself, met my husband and gave birth to my daughter. It’s also where I met the majority of the women I consider lifetime friends. My love for Atlanta is entrenched not just in the city itself but what it represents to me and mine. We all grew up in Atlanta. We lived, we loved, we learned.

By the time the plane touched down I was beside myself with excitement over seeing my brother and anticipation in seeing my Pie baby. I’d put out the word that I was going to be in town so a few of my other college friends reached out so we could hook-up.  When I finally met up with Pie and Keya during dinner we squealed like teenagers as we hugged and fussed over one another. These were my people and as soon as we embraced I could feel that bond re-strengthen. We have been through a lot together and even though we don’t talk everyday (or even as often as we should)  it’s like no time has passed when we get together. 

Because we are grown ladies we ditched my family and headed out for quick ‘mom/auntie’ ATL turn up. Because memories y'all. Because we are young-old and have been partying since 1997 we quickly realized the "graduation celebration" club/lounge street scene was not for us (I see you young man puking in the street. Shout out to your homeboy for patting your back and walking you to the car.) and opted for what my brother calls “a cool lounge spot”.  We ended up at someplace called The Sound Table, good music, great drinks, EXCELLENT company. It was an all-around good time.We danced a bit then headed outside to talk some more. There aren’t even words to convey how good it felt to be back in the A. So much of who I am is because of that place. So much of who I am is because of Pie.  To be in the city where the party don’t stop, did something for my soul. To be there with my girls and my brother, was mind blowing to say the least.

Following our ‘evening turn up’ the girls had to take me home and at some point we realized it was well after 3 in the morning. It seemed only appropriate to take the party to Waffle House on the way to taking me back to my hotel. Waffle house did not disappoint with colorful customers, an entertaining wait staff and of course, quality food!!! I mean, where else can you get a waffle, bacon, o.j. and bomb hashbrowns for under $6??? Scattered smothered and covered Yo!

As I sat in the airport on the way to go home after three whirlwind days in a city that basically made me, I couldn't help but chuckle at the memories both old and new that happened here. Sitting outside well into the morning hours, feeling the humidity like a faint warm breath on my neck, taking in the glory of the scenery, the sights of city and the sounds of the people and I felt like myself. I could feel the changes and could see myself timeline from my arrival as a bright-eyed 18 year old with PLANS for her life and how that life deviated from the 'vision' and became something so much more.  I looked out the window of the plane and reminisced on a life gone by and thanked a higher power for looking out for me all those years ago. I don't know who I'd be if I hadn't had Atlanta and all it's many trappings. 

For me, Atlanta is pure poetry. Everything from the restaurants, highways, byways and streets has meaning. At one point I was with my family and we were turned around over by the Georgia World Congress Center and we landed on a street that just, felt familiar, I looked up and a flood of memories came rushing back. I KNEW that street. Random as it was, I knew it and figured out our way back to the freeway. Driving to my brothers house further out in the sticks with the windows down and the smell of the country (hey, allergies) filling my nose I was reminded of the summer I turned 21 and how it felt like I was on the verge of something great. I remembered how magical this city used to be. And then I wondered if it was the city or if it was us. Because whenever we are together or I come back from having spent any time with my college crew I feel that same sense of starry-eyed magic. But being in the place where it all began, hitting corners and spying old haunts while reminiscing about days long gone was exactly what I needed and the timing was just right for it all to happen the way it did. So yeah, when people ask I say I still consider Atlanta home, not because I live there, but because who I was when I was did. 

Do you have another place, other than where you currently live, that you call home?


  1. Sounds like you had a very exciting time. It's always good to catch up with old friends, reminicse and enjoy a good time. I live in the ATL now... south of, actually, in Stockbridge. I call Maryland and Delaware my home. My young childhood memories live in Delaware and my teenage memories are in Maryland. Special times indeed. Thanks for sharing yours. #BLMgirl


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