So life happened and I managed to single handedly implode every avenue of my life in a series of events so mind boggling, that I’m still left wondering what the hell I was thinking. If you know me at all, you know that I very rarely seek out advise. I prefer to live my life by the seat of my pants and pray everything will work out. The praying thing is new, but I’m trying to find spirituality in this crazy life of mine.
Imagine my surprise when the majority of the people I spoke to about where I was moving had visceral reactions. Before I got the full word, Kinston, out of my mouth, an immediate, and non-requested opinion was shared about the downfalls of this fair city.
Let me see if I can remember some. High crime. First of all, I’m from McKeesport. This is usually just a catch-all phrase for poverty. I am poor, therefore while I prefer to live in a low crime area, I can’t afford those, so moving on. Then there was my personal favorite: You can be everyone’s token white friend. Believe it or not, there is a nice diversity to Kinston. I will have you know that I only have like three friends, and none of them live in Kinston, so I’m not a token anything. Though I would be! If you need one, let me know.
The people who have such preconceived notions about a city they’ve probably never been do or perhaps did nothing more than drive though, are missing the point of this city on the verge of rebirth.
Here are some of the great things I’ve discovered about Kinston.
1.) I can’t get lost. – Seriously ya’ll. Every street meets up with these two other streets, and if I can find them, I can find work and home.
2.) The absolute best grocery stores. They might not have fancy stores like Harris Teeter or Krogers, but there is a Piggly Wiggly on every corner, and the one on McLewean street has the best meat section of almost any grocery store.
3.) Though I’m not a member yet, there is a Kinston Community Center with an honest to goodness water park. Seriously. It’s like $65 a month for a family but come-on, how cool is that?
4.) There’s a baseball team called the Woodland Ducks. I’m totally going to a baseball game as soon as I get a little extra $$ together.
5.) The food. So Hunter and I stopped at Sabor Modern Latin Cuisine on North Street, and then I tried a burger from The Boiler Room. Kinston is bad ass when it comes to food. Seriously, it’s better than both Jacksonville and Greenville.
6.) There is a park on every corner. Some of these parks have public pools, but all of them are available to the residents of Kinston. I’ve never seen so many parks that are in such good repair that are actually used by people who live near them.
7.) People mind their own damn business. I have lived here for two weeks, and I’ve met two people. I’m an introvert, this is a beautiful thing. I’m not unfriendly, I just struggle making friends because people. (Yes, people.)
8.) Beer. There’s this absolutely amazing place called Mother Earth Brewery. The beer is good. Like for real good, not Sam Adams good. (If you like Sam Adams, bitch somewhere else, this is my blog)
9.) I work at a Modern Apothecary called Serenity. I get to try the most interesting products. I’m in love with Flower Water. It’s like Febreeze, but with a scent people actually want their clothes or sheets to smell like. Oh, we have CBD products too, which are cool.
10.) Library!! Museum!! History!! Science!! Art!! This is such a cool place with random pockets of culture in weird old buildings that you simply don’t expect to see weird cool stuff.
I’ve decided that as part of my personal growth, I’ll be exploring Kinston over the next couple of months. I’m going to share my journey with you. Some come see me at Serenity Modern Apothecary, I’m here most days Tue-Sat. Let’s explore Kinston together.