A Window into Life in the Suburbs

"Consider how the lilies grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these." Luke 12:27 (NIV)

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Somewhere to Live

I'm definitely enjoying the cool change in our neck of the concrete jungle although it seems to be playing havoc with my sinuses. Got an attack of sneezies and sniffles yesterday but that seems to have calmed down a tad. Had a quiet day indoors with the 4 year old who was skulking around the house Gollum-like for food. Her problem and mine is that she wants to eat graze all day long... something every hour and I'm not keen about having to feed her constantly. But the moment she feels a touch bored... something in brain seems to propel her toward food.

Came upon this Livability Ranking and Overview through one of my favourite blogs today and as with all surveys that I read about, I come away wondering how this study was done and what the criteria was for making it into the magical top 10. Of course, I can't be privy to that kind of information unless I cough up $500 for the privilege. Since I'm a housewife living in the middle of surburbia, I have far better things to do with $500.
Yeah, I'm a skeptic. But I'm sure I'm not the target market either. That part is patently obvious. As for the rest of it, the website gives away very little:

The Liveability Ranking and Overview assesses living conditions in 140 cities around the world. A rating of relative comfort for 30 indicators is assigned across five broad categories: stability; healthcare; culture and environment; education; and infrastructure. The survey gives an overall rating of 0-100, where 1 is intolerable and 100 is ideal.

Four Australian cities made it to the top 10 (Melbourne, Sydney, Perth and Adelaide), which will no doubt become a nice tourist promotional tag when the campaign time comes. Other than that and some self-congratulatory back patting I don't see the point. Do potential immigrants do that kind research before deciding where to go? Do businesses for that matter? Don't they all head to China or India anyway even if Vienna has great restaurants and some of the best orchestras in the world?

Although not listed on Livability Ranking, I know I live in the best city in the world .Recently, parts of our city experienced catastrophic flooding. It's not the first in our history but because the city is much more built up than it used to be, it affected a lot more people. The largest volunteering organization in our state received thousands of offers of help. At some stage up to 22 000 people registered with them. Charity groups like the Salvation Army were turning away donations of clothes because they were swamped. On the weekend after the flood, hundreds of people gave of their time to help with the clean-up of homes and streets in flood affected areas. That spirit of generosity that Australians are so famous for came alive in a community's great hour of need.
There's been a lot of talk about multiculturalism of late. An ideology to unite a community of disparate peoples. To me, multiculturalism is merely window dressing -- a fad that politicians and intellectuals have bought into. It seems to me that the real measure of a people or a civilization is what it does in times of crises.
At the aftermath of the crisis last month, I was reminded of why an immigrant like myself, live in this country and choose to bring up a family in a small part of this great continent.

1 comment:

  1. We certainly do live in the best city! I was both amazed and proud at the number of people 'loving their neighbours' after the floods.


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