Welcome to Viva-city and Downtown San Diego
Sandra Simmons

Life in the City

-by Sandra Simmons

“The lights are much brighter there, you can forget all your troubles, forget all your cares, and go Downtown.” – Petula Clark

The year was 1964. My love affair with cities was born the moment I first heard Petula Clark beautifully croon the song “Downtown.”

As a teenager, the lyrics and beat brought a sense of hope that there was a place out there especially for me. A place of paradise, a place to listen to the music of the traffic, where the lights were much brighter, where everything’s waiting for me.

The song also created a special connection between my father and me. Being of the untrustworthy age of over 30, he thought all contemporary music was just loud noise. However, whenever that song came on the radio, my father and I would sing along together.

Fast forward many years when, as a requirement to work for CCDC, I was asked to sing a song before the entire staff. Of course it was a joke to see how the new employee would handle the situation. However, the joke was on the rest of the staff as I’d been briefed prior to the meeting and was asked to sing “Downtown.”

When presented with the request, I timidly pushed my chair back and began singing, “When you are alone and life is making you lonely, you can always go…” I held out my arms, prompting the staff to finish. With smiles on their faces they belted out the reply, “Downtown!” They, too, shared my love of Downtown.

Can you feel it? Downtown is becoming a city. With a population of almost 33,000, the song of the city is reaching a crescendo. The background music of rumbling cars and trains creates a resonating bass undertone, with the occasional staccato of sirens and horns punctuating the city’s song. The lilting lyrics come from people who walk the streets, greeting those along their path, bringing smiles to faces and passing the beat along. When the rhythm is passed along to you, don’t you temporarily forget all your troubles, and live in the moment?

I muse…Is Downtown the ultimate stimulant?

These Downtowners are stimulated by life in our musical city with its ever-varying cadences and rhythms being passed along.

It’s a joy to be able to walk out our front door and enjoy the pulse of the city with all its excitement. – Jim and Lee Fehlberg, Treo

Each day brings new wonders, and I know that the city has helped me see with "new eyes." This is truly where I belong!! – Barbara Vezzetti, Archstone

Jenifer Bubenik (Island Village Apartments) thinks our Downtown is like a mini-Manhattan. She never needs to leave Downtown; she can experience it all right here.

Over the past several weeks, I’ve found myself humming, even singing out loud, “Things’ll be great when you’re – Downtown. Don’t wait a minute more – Downtown. Everything’s waiting for me (sic).” Pass the beat along! - March 2006

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