A blog by an American expatriate living in the heart of New Europe

"It's a lateral transfer" -- George W. Bush, 43rd President of the United States
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Tuesday, February 07, 2006


From Mitch Albom:

If there had been any question that Detroit could host the world's biggest party, doubts were erased. If there had been any question the spirit of this town outshines its struggles, it is gone now.


Someone wrote this week that Detroit was "auditioning for acceptance," and I guess that's accurate, hard as it is to hear, because you wonder sometimes why we care so much what the rest of the country thinks.

But if we suffer a wee inferiority complex, it manifests itself in good ways. Everyone had a bit of Chamber of Commerce in them last week. Time after time, when visitors were asked their impressions of this city, they said, "I can't believe the people are so nice."

And as they head for the airport this morning, let's think about what they saw while they were here:

They saw Aretha Franklin, they saw Kid Rock. They saw the spacious lobby of the Renaissance Center looking out to Canada. They saw Canada. They saw The Henry Ford. They saw the Max M. Fisher Music Center and Seldom Blues restaurant. They saw the Fox and State and Woodward Avenue under the lights. They saw Ford Field and Comerica Park. They saw our best manners and our welcoming attitude. They saw us deal with snow. They saw a football Sunday with a downtown heartbeat.

But here's the thing.

They saw things we can see all the time.

So maybe what we showed the world, we also showed ourselves.

Coming down Woodward on Sunday, I saw a man with a cup, tapping the loose change inside it, looking for cash.

"Collecting for next year's Super Bowl," he said. "Next year's Super Bowl, anybody?"

Back to business. Today is the first day of the rest of Detroit's life. Let's hope we make as much of the weeks ahead as we did of the week behind. And we remember the biggest lesson learned from this whole, crazy experience.


Don't let anyone ever say otherwise.


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