Eugene Cho

your city and your ideal future home?

feature-92-seattle31

In light of Seattle being named ‘City of the Year’ by Fast Company magazine (article below), let’s begin a new week with a community building post.  A ‘community building’ post is an invitation to get off the sidelilnes and write a comment.  Share your answer and a bit of yourself.

Here’s the question:

Where do you currently live?  Do you like your current city/town? And if you could live anywhere else in the world (not visit but actually live), where would that be?

My answer: Obviously, I live in Seattle.  We are heading towards our 12 year anniversary in Seattle this June.  It’s amazing to think that nearly 12 years ago, Minhee and I packed up our station wagon (about 5 months after getting married) and made our way to Seattle – not quite certain what the future would hold.  I shared more about why I love Seattle here.  Many of you also shared your answers for the world’s most beautiful city.

If I could live anywhere, my choices:  1) San Francisco [because of family], 2) San Diego [because I want to know what it feels like to live in regular sun], and 3) Barcelona or Madrid [because I can speak Spanish and this would be an absolute new start] and 4) back to Seoul, Korea [food, food, food].

How about you?

Here’s the article from Fast Company naming Seattle it’s City of the Year

When Fast Company named Seattle its 2009 City of the Year — based on the city’s creativity, the editors said — surely, I thought, the weather and the winters must have had something to do with it. Our winters are dark: At 47 degrees latitude, the winter solstice brings sundown at 4:21 p.m. and sunrise at 7:54 a.m. Our winters are gray: While we get only 38 inches of rain per year — less than New York or Boston, Houston or Atlanta — we average 154 days of precipitation. Our winters are long: Cloudy season begins in October and lasts into June; we boast an average of 226 cloudy days a year.

But consider the bounty those long, dark, damp winters have provided the world. There’s Starbucks, Microsoft, Amazon and its Kindling, Boeing jets, Frango mints, Pearl Jam, Costco, Jones Soda, Jimi Hendrix, salmon jerky. That’s an impressive list for a city of just 600,000 people tucked in a remote corner of America, wedged tightly between two mountain ranges, and pushed up against the cold, deep Puget Sound.

Now, in our nation’s economic winter, Seattle’s multifaceted economy and forward-thinking business climate have given the city a little extra insulation; the jobless rate in January was 6.8%, more than a percentage point better than the national average. This is the kind of city that will thrive and lead us into recovery.

So I set out to explore why, exactly, so many creative, influential minds — both native and transplanted, from Quincy Jones to Bill and Melinda Gates, Cameron Crowe to Sir Mix-a-Lot — who have contributed so much to the world, love this city and call it home. [read full article]

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29 Responses

  1. Josh says:

    I currently live in Orange County. It’s warm and beautiful but I do miss the seasons.

    If I could live anywhere, my two choices would be NYC or Beijing.

  2. Chad says:

    I currently live in Raleigh, NC.

    I would love to live in Manitou Springs, CO or Washington D.C.

  3. Drew says:

    I live in the DC area. (Great cultural setting but terrible traffic and hot summers!) I’ve love to live in Fort Collins, CO.

  4. reJoyce says:

    We’ve been in the Dallas/Fort Worth area for the past two years.

    Rather than picking one place, I’d like to be able to continue to move around and live in places I haven’t yet. I suppose when I get too feeble to continue to do that, I’d like to live near the Mediterranean Sea.

  5. Matt says:

    I’ve lived in baltimore for 8 years, and I’ve loved this city for the past 7.5 years. I’m getting to a point where I’m just being disillisioned and increasingly pessimistic about this city. It’s just been pretty sad watching this city with so much potential stagnate, and fall over and over again to drugs, crime, and corruption.

    I would love to move colorado, utah, oregon, or washington simply because of the proximity to nature (I love the outdoors in all seasons), but ultimately, I know that my real home is in heaven (i know… i know… cheesy christian answer – but not cuz i’m trying to be cheesy christian, but just because, I know that i’ll never escape the things that bring my city down wherever I go. other places just mask it a little better (ok, a lot better))…

  6. steve s says:

    right where I am at…

    It’s the best place to be!

  7. dan says:

    I wish magazines would stop writing stuff like this. We have already had about 100,000 people move into Seattle over the past decade (mostly as a result of the movie Singles???). Not that I am saying no one can move to Seattle, just don’t honk your horn in non emergency situations.

    Not cool.

    Other than the new horn blowers, Seattle is where it’s at.

  8. hilarybarnett says:

    I’ve lived in Nashville for three years now, and truly love it. The seasons usually last a perfect 3 months each, so not too long that you get sick of one. The rollings hills are beautiful, and you are less than 2 hours from mountains, hiking, cliff jumping, and beautiful vistas. People are genuinely friendly for the most part, and men still hold the door for you.🙂 (I had to get used to that coming from the North!) There is live music going on every night of the week, and always neat cultural activities, volunteer opportunities, and great universities. The only other place I think I might consider living is out west (san fransisco or l.a.)- but I would miss the seasons.

  9. Mike says:

    I’ve lived in San Diego for 2 years now (after a 4 year hiatus in San Antonio). I think I would be perfectly content spending the rest of my life hear. Beautiful weather, beaches, friendly (for the most part) people, great diversity, plenty of culture and great restaraunts…now if only the cost of living would go down, so that someday, maybe, I’ll be able to buy a house…

  10. eugenecho says:

    @reJoyce: nice. one of my dreams is to sell everything, get a RV, and live around North and Central America.

    @dan: c’mon! i thought philly would be #1 for you.

    @mike: homes aren’t affordable right now w/ the housing market downturn?

  11. anne says:

    I live in St Paul, MN. Grew up on the east side, and returned after college to intentionally live in the hood near my work and church.

    St Paul has some of the highest populations of Somali, Ethiopian, and/or Oromo immigrants and Hmong people. We have a progressive educational system and lots of other perks. We have the woods and the city mixed close together!

    I think I love this place because my heart is here. Where would I move? To a place my heart goes. Right now, that’s here or Culiacan, Mexico.

  12. Jay Johnson says:

    Raised most of my kids is Seattle, loved it then in the 70’s and 80’s. It was clean, fun and so much to do. Traffic was not unbearable, but getting there. Now I live in Bellingham, and it’s clean, fun, close to the water, surrounded by mountains, and traffic is picking up, so I’m not the only one who has discovered it. Too many places to chose from, anywhere with a mild temp and very close to an ocean.

  13. Jay Johnson says:

    House prices have been jacked-up for years, it’s good to see the prices coming into reality with worth, and back to an affordable range.

  14. Richard says:

    Another St. Paul resident here, and quite frankly I love it.

    If I were to live somewhere else, probably Jamaica or Trinidad (two places where I’ve lived before). Within the U.S., I really liked DC when I went to visit.

  15. Mike levitt says:

    Living in Amherstburg, Ontario. Originally from the Metro Detroit area, and also lived in the Chicago area for 6 years, so same weather, different currency and culture.

    Love San Diego, and would love to live there one day, but I feel God wants me where I am right now, so I’ll listen to Him.

  16. abramjanson says:

    Currently: Indiana.

    In the future… Anywhere without cornfields.🙂 but seriously… New Zealand

  17. Barry says:

    I live in Murfreesboro, dead center of TN. It’s ok but not as pretty as east TN in the Smokies.

    If I could live anywhere: Seattle (I move there in August), Portland, Denver and maybe Minneapolis.

  18. Kacie says:

    Currently live in Dallas, and I dislike it. Nothing personal, it’s just uninteresting.

    If I could live in anywhere? Oh man… Oxford, England because the place just oozes history, intelligence, and quaintness out of every corner.

    Or maybe Jayapura, Indonesia, because it’s home and right between gorgeous beaches and a beautiful mountain and has the most beautiful sunsets in the world…

    or maybe a small town in the Alps…. because…. it’s the alps.

    *sigh*…
    how about anywhere but Dallas?

  19. josephcastillo says:

    I live in the Bay Area, but I would love to move back to Seattle. It is the best city in America.

  20. James says:

    Currently live in Syracuse, NY.

    If I could live anywhere, I’d move to Coruscant, in a galaxy far, far away.

  21. your friend says:

    I live in Seoul. Pretty polluted. Yellow dust with chemicals come over from China regularly in spring.

    Also, Seoul is pretty overcrowded, which makes you feel jammed in.

    Nevertheless, I WANT to be here, because God wants me here and because the person I love most is right beside me, and together we mingle with the crowd, share Jesus… exciting!

  22. Carrie says:

    I’m a Michigan girl. I’ve traveled a lot, seen a lot of places that are “supposed” to be prettier, but honestly, I love love love it here. The seasons are so colorful, each one, full of texture and richness.

  23. Ruth says:

    I live in Belfast Northern Ireland. I love it here, the people and their sense of humour (the craic) is great. The scenery is fantastaic. BUT its rains, a lot, and so only for the weather i would love to live in the south of France (well the food and wine might have something to do with it as well)

  24. Rusty says:

    Boston is by far the best city in the United States (no offense, Seattle, but a lot of people know that. I think the best kept secret among American cities is Kansas City. You get all four seasons, beautiful rolling hills and rivers, a world-class farmer’s market, more fountains than any city in the world save Rome, great parks, affordable houses, zero traffic, tremendous racial/ethnic diversity, fascinating history and architecture, incredible museums (including the Negro Leagues Baseball Hall of Fame and the National World War I museum), vibrant professional sports scene, excellent jazz clubs, and the best bbq in the country. And you’re dead center in the middle of the United States so any corner of the country is as easily accessible as the next. What else could you want in a city?

  25. Peter K says:

    I cannot believe that no one has mentioned Hawaii. It’s US soil, beautiful (almost magical), and half way between Asia and California. You can also eat SPAM openly, preferably between some rice and seaweed.

  26. Andy Larsen says:

    Eugene. I didn’t know you knew Spanish. That’s cool. I live in Seattle too [for the rest that didn’t know] and for the most part love it. The drawbacks have been duly noted in the Fast Company article. The best way to deal with the rain is to just get out in it. Don’t let it limit plans.

    If I could, I would live in Barcelona, where we lived for a year. More sun, less rain, great transit system, connected to the rest of Europe, the Mediterranean, N. Africa. Need I say anymore. 2nd choice would be somewhere in Mexico, like San Miguel de Allende or somewhere on the Pacific coast.

  27. Andy Larsen says:

    Eugene. I didn’t know you knew Spanish. That’s cool. I live in Seattle too [for the rest that didn’t know] and for the most part love it. The drawbacks have been duly noted in the Fast Company article. The best way to deal with the rain is to just get out in it. Don’t let it limit plans.

    If I could, I would live in Barcelona, where we lived for a year. More sun, less rain, great transit system, connected to the rest of Europe, the Mediterranean, N. Africa. Need I say more. 2nd choice would be somewhere in Mexico, like San Miguel de Allende or somewhere on the Pacific coast.

  28. Rebecca says:

    I’m a Seattle native, born and bred, and absolutely love this city in all its damp glory. The mountains, the trees, the water, the weather, the culture, the music, the unique personality of the city. Can’t ever see myself living anywhere else.

    I never want to leave, but if I was going to live somewhere else, I suppose it would be San Francisco, New York, or somewhere in Scotland.

  29. mattbusby says:

    My wife and I currently live outside of Tampa. We are eyeing Chattanooga, TN as our next local. Its small but still has an urban feel, 4 seasons, and plenty of outdoors!

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One Day’s Wages

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As I soaked in this breathtaking sunrise this morning above the clouds, I felt compelled to pray for so my places in America and around the world that are experiencing such pain, heartache, injustice, and violence. At times, it feels so overwhelming but in prayer, I was reminded of these words from John 16:33. As we keep striving, working, hoping, preaching, loving, truthtelling, reconciling, repenting, forgiving, dismantling, peacemaking, Kingdom building...may we fix our eyes on Christ: “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” - John 16:33 Grateful for a very full weekend of ministry and preaching in Toronto, Canada (GTA). Such a privilege to partner with @worldvisioncan @wvcollective to advocate for the most vulnerable around the world. God is so gracious. A true honor to meet and encourage local pastors, lecture at Tyndale University & Seminary (photo), and preach at Richmond Hills Community Church, Compass Point Bible Church, and New City Church. Thank you, Lord, that you use broken and imperfect people like me to speak of Your love. Today, Minhee and I dropped off our eldest child at her college. We have been thinking and praying about this day for many years. On some days, we hoped it would never come. On other days, we couldn't wait for it to come. On some days, we prayed for time to stop and other days, we prayed with anticipation. 
After an entire summer of laughing it off, it hit us...hard...this week. Seeing all of her stuff laid out on the basement floor was the catalyst to a load of emotions.

After unloading the car and taking her stuff to her new home for this year and mindful that she might never live with us again; helping sort out her stuff, saying hello to her roommates...I wasn't sure what to do or say.

A flood of thoughts rushed my mind.

Is she ready?
Have we done enough?
Have we taught her enough? 
What if this? What if that?

And so we shared what we have shared with her the moment she began to understand words: "Remember who you are. Remember WHO you belong to. Remember what you're about. God loves you so much. Please hold God's Word and His promises close and dear to your heart. We love you so much and we are so proud of you." And with that, we said goodbye. Even if she may not be thousands of miles away, this is a new chapter for her and even for us. I kept it composed. Her roommate was staring at me. I didn't want to be that father. I have street cred to uphold. Another final hug. 
And I came home.
And I wept.
Forget my street cred.
I miss her. I love her.
She will always be my little baby.

I'm no parenting guru. I just laughed as I wrote that line. No, I'm stumbling and bumbling along but I'd love to share an ephiphany I learned not that long ago. Coming to this realization was incredibly painful but simultaneously, liberating. To be honest, it was the ultimate game-changer in my understanding as a parent seeking after the heart of God.

While there are many methods, tools, philosophies, and biblical principles to parenting, there is – in my opinion – only one purpose or destination.

Our purpose as parents is to eventually…release them. Send forth. For His glory. Met a friend and fellow pastor who I haven't seen in over 20 years. In him, I saw a glimpse of my future. While only 10 years older, his kids are married and he's now a grandfather of 3. His love for his wife and family were so evident and his passion for the Gospel has not wavered. It was so good to see someone a bit older still passionately serving the Lord with such joy and faithfulness. Lord, help me to keep running the race for your Glory. Happy wife.
Happy life. - Eugenius 3:16

I still remember that time, many years ago, when Minhee was pregnant with our first child. She had left her family and friends in Korea just two years before. Her morning sickness was horrible and when she finally had an appetite, she craved her favorite Korean food from certain restaurants in her neighborhood in Seoul, Korea. I had no way of getting that food from those restaurants so I actually said, "How about a Whopper? Big Mac?" Sorry honey. Eat away. You deserve it. I don't care if it sounds mushy but sunsets are one of my love languages. Seoul, Korea was amazing but WOW...what a breathtaking welcome back sunset by Seattle. Not ready to let go of summer.

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