Thursday, December 22, 2011

Jacksonville (Neptune Beach)

Way back when I lived in the affluent Raleigh suburb of Cary, for blogging purposes I used to refer to my hometown as "Raleigh (Cary)". The reason is because as far as everyone from out of town was concerned, I lived in Raleigh. But as far as locals were concerned, I lived in Cary. With the "Raleigh (Cary)" designation, I satisfied both the out-of-towners who think of the entire metropolitan area as Raleigh*, and the locals who actually do make the distinction between Wake County's various communities.

(* - There's nothing wrong with that, by the way. That's just the way it is. Regardless of the metropolitan area, we all do it. For instance, when somebody says they're from "Atlanta", the odds that they actually live within the Atlanta city limits - or even within Fulton County - are probably pretty small. But it is kind of annoying with Durham, because I feel like Durham is well known enough to stand on its own. I tell people I'm from Durham, and at some point "Durham" must morph into "Raleigh" in their heads, because later on they'll say, "You're from Raleigh, right?" And I never know how to answer that follow-up question, whether to correct them and say "Durham", or just go along with it.)

The reason I bring this up is because a few months ago, my parents bought a house in Neptune Beach, FL, which is where we'll be staying when we visit from now on. So is it still accurate or appropriate to say "We're going to Jacksonville"? Would it be better to say "We're going to Neptune Beach"? Or, should I revive the old Raleigh (Cary) style and say "We're going to Jacksonville (Neptune Beach)"?

For blogging purposes, my decision is as follows: occasionally, I will slip in a "Jacksonville (Neptune Beach)" reference, but mostly, I'll still say "We're going to Jacksonville". For one, it's not like we're going to stay in Neptune Beach (or the other beaches) the whole time we're there. We will be spending plenty of time in Jacksonville proper, I imagine. But the thing with Neptune Beach is, when Duval County and the City of Jacksonville consolidated, Neptune Beach technically became part of Jacksonville, although it - along with Atlantic Beach and Jacksonville Beach, and Baldwin, too - kept, their own sort-of "city" status in the process. So basically, I can't go wrong by saying "We're going to Jacksonville". It's still accurate, anywhere in Duval County. (Orange Park or Ponte Vedra would be a different story, however.)

Enough semantics! We'll be in Jacksonville (or Neptune Beach or whatever) Friday afternoon through Tuesday morning, including on Christmas Day. There's a lot to get excited about with this trip. Marla hasn't been to Jacksonville (or Neptune Beach or whatever) yet. Shoot, Marla hasn't even been to South Carolina yet. (Three new states for Marla!) We haven't been to Jacksonville in any capacity since January (which has to be the longest span of time I've ever gone without a Jacksonville visit), and we haven't seen my parents' new house yet, either. And, of course, it will be Marla's first Christmas. Lots of firsts coming up this weekend.

So, Merry Christmas and/or Happy Holidays! Until next time, we'll see you on Twitter.

1 comment:

James Allen said...

She might not be a new state, but Marla also gets to see Paige for the first time.