The Ann Arbor Sampler


January, 2013

It’s no secret.  I live in Ann Arbor, Michigan and I don’t love it.  That’s not a popular opinion to have in a little town where most people really, really like where they live.  Some people are here just for school, some people have returned with nostalgia, some people are townies that have never left.  I wasn’t born in this state.  I didn’t spend 4+ years of drunken undergrad years here, making lifelong memories.  I moved here in 2009 (for love, if you must know), decided to get on the grad school wagon, and puttered around for a few years.  I made some lovely, close friends that I feel grateful for every day (coming soon: a post on how difficult it is making adult friends in a new city).  Yet, the whole time, I never really invested in Ann Arbor because I never planned to stay.  It’s a transient college town full of people coming and going.  A stepping stone town.  Nearly 4 years later, I’m still here, and unsure about where life will take me.  Maybe home, maybe to some backwoods crapville in Alabama, maybe nowhere.  Maybe I will stay in Ann Arbor.

If that’s the case, I want to do a whole lot better.  Better for myself, for my now-husband, for my friends, and for our family.  The Ann Arbor Sampler is something I’ve thought about creating for a while.  A sampling of this southeast Michigan gem, from scratch.  My hope for this project is that it will open my mind to all of the great things A2 has to offer, like I’m seeing it all for the first time.  I also hope that maybe other Ann Arbor newbies will benefit from it, seeing what’s cool, what’s delicious, what’s interesting, what sucks, or what’s annoying (I’ll try to avoid this topic as much as I can!)  For those that have always lived here, maybe it will be an opportunity to revisit places you haven’t been to in years, or experience the town through fresh eyes.  I’ll also ask for your patience, because I have a lot of mind changing to do, and a lot of love for the place where I come from.  That being said, I’m ready to start from scratch.

Body Wisdom – Massage Therapy

The Original Cottage Inn –  Pizza, Pasta, Italian, Sandwiches, Bar

Sadako – Sushi, Japanese Food

The Fillmore Detroit/Flogging Molly/Cafe D’Mongo’s Speakeasy – Concert Venue, Musicians, Artists, Irish Punk Music, Bar

Making Friends in a New City – Meet ups, Rec and Ed, Art, Sports, Friendship

Lab – Coffee House, Tea, Pastries

The Wafel Shop – Gourmet Belgian Waffles, Coffee, Dessert, Breakfast, Dinner

The Earle – French and Italian Fine Dining, Dinner, Happy Hour

ZUMBA at Arbor Fit Club – Fitness Classes, Health Club, Exercise, Gym

Vellum – Modern American Cuisine, Fine Dining, Dinner, Cocktails

The Real Seafood Company – Seafood, Dinner, Cocktails, Raw Bar

The 8 Ball and The Fleetwood Diner – Darts, Pool, Cheap Drinks, Music, Late Night Food, Casual Dining

Tomukun Noodle Bar – Japanese Food, Noodles, Udon, Pho, Rice Bowls. Casual Dining

A FAREWELL TO ARBS – My Ann Arbor Story


3 thoughts on “The Ann Arbor Sampler

  1. WOW, what a fascinating project. And I am very eager to learn more, because I am also kinda lost in this town that so many people seem to love…came here for love, too. I am super excited about your blog!!

    1. Thanks so much for your message! I’m excited to have crossed paths with another like minded “newbie”. I hope you enjoy, and I always love tips on good things you’ve found. Us out-of-towners have to stick together!

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