From 1994-1997, I lived on Briarcliff Avenue in Atlanta. When I was not traveling for work with EY, I made a six mile walk from my apartment down Johnson, which turned to North Highland all the way to Ponce de Leon.
I loved those walks. I thought, I planned, I dreamed. And I walked my ass off. It never occurred to me at the time how hilly the walk was, but today I felt it for sure. No wonder my legs rocked back then!
Beyond the workout and the great thinking time, I loved seeing the shops and the people I passed everyday–like Mitzi & Romano and 20th Century Antiques. The old antique shop that peppered its inventory with other more current collectibles that got online in a big way when eBay and 1stdibs came along.
Above the door of 20th Century Antiques, in gilded font was the famous John Wesley quote:
“Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the places you can, at all the times you can, to all the people you can, as long as ever you can.”
Since 1995, I’ve carried this quote in my wallet, on a beaten up piece of paper torn from a Peachtree Road United Methodist Church bulletin. Walking by it and reading it everyday meant the world to me.
Today, Mitzi & Romano is gone. 20th Century Antiques is gone. Replaced by stores that I don’t recognize. I guess change is good. I was delighted to see that George’s, Moe’s and Joe’s, the Highland Tap, and Murphy’s are all still there. Bars and restaurants seems to have better luck than retail. The container gardens remain and are an inspiration.
Sadly, the restaurant Indigo up the road on North Highland has been gone a long time. Replaced by something called Morningside Kitchen. I wonder if they have the dreamy seafood, key lime pie and coconut brownie that I ordered every single time I visited Indigo. Life is too short to only choose one dessert!
What a thrill to take this walk and see the old neighborhood, from the same vantage point as I had twenty years ago. I loved it just as much today as I did back then. Maybe more.