Thanks for visiting The Move to Suma.  If you’re curious about what the blog is about, here’s your explanation:

Here’s what I wrote when I started in April 2009, on the eve of making a move from the city to the suburbs, explaining the “SUMA” concept and describe my purpose in writing the blog:

This is a blog about my adventures in leaving my apartment in Manhattan, where I’ve lived for almost 17 years, to make that move to the suburbs.

Why am I leaving? Because it’s time.  I love New York City, and I love living here, but there comes a point in your life when you have to come to grips with the life you have, not the life you like to think you have.

So what is SUMA?  Well, here’s the thing.  I am not ready to leave Manhattan. I know I need to, I know it’s time, but I can’t stand the thought of leaving good bars and great restaurants and cool people and great things to do and the center of the world and all that.  I can’t bear it.

So I’ve convinced myself that I’m not leaving.  No, not me!  I’m just moving to a new section of Manhattan, a hot new neighborhood like Dumbo and Nolita and all those other acronymic (is that a word?) Manhattan neighborhoods that magazine writers or real estate brokers are always discovering.

I’m just moving to “SUMA,” the “SUburbs of MAnhattan.”  SUMA.  A neighborhood circling Manhattan proper.  SUMA is not a neighborhood per se, of course, but it’s a state of mind, the state of mind that I might be moving to the suburbs, but I’m going to retain my Manhattan sensibilities, pretentious though they may be.

So I’m on a mission to find the Manhattan-ish stuff about the suburbs: good restaurants, bars, interesting people, cool things to do.  This blog will be about what I find.

Now, looking back three years later, I find that the blog has kind of drifted away from that original goal, organically expanding to cover my life in the suburbs, my experiences now as a parent raising a kid (and a dog), and more generally about the suburban experience as a whole.  As I wrote on the three-year anniversary of my move, I look back at my initial reservations — and my almost desperate intention to preserve my “urbanity” — almost ruefully:

The longer I live in the suburbs, though, the more I realize that it was the right choice for me at that stage in my life. Like many people, the decision to move from the city is bound up in the decision to simply “grow up” – to get married, have kids, settle down.  It’s tough to separate one from the other.  Would I have moved from the city if I wasn’t married, or not planning to have a kid?  Maybe not.  But then I’d also have to think about the life I would have today as a 44 year old single childless man living in Manhattan, and whether that’s the life I want for myself.  That’s not a particularly pretty picture….

I think that’s the challenge that anyone thinking of moving to the suburbs has to face.  Don’t think about the life you had in the city, and how living in the suburbs is going to change it.  Rather, think about the life you are looking to have, and where it makes more sense to try to have that life.

I started writing this blog to address the question of whether living in the suburbs would change me.  But that’s the wrong way to put it.  The better question is this: how will I change while I’m living in the suburbs?  The change is going to happen regardless of where you get your mail. It’s going to happen the first time you look around and realize that you’re the oldest guy in the club, or when you have a party and realize that all your friends have to drive in from their new homes, or when you realize that you can’t take cabs around the city with your baby in your lap.  The suburbs don’t change you.  You change.

So that’s kind of where I am now.  I don’t have the same sort of heart palpitations about becoming a suburbanite that I did when I first started writing about the Move to SUMA.  Maybe that’s because I’ve evolved, or maybe I’ve just settled.

Meanwhile, the blog has expanded beyond my own personal experiences to cover the suburbs more generally, covering the news about the suburbs, commentary about the great “urban versus suburban sprawl” debates, and also including my self-appointed role as the driver of the “Welcome Wagon” for celebrities joining my in suburban idyll.

Thanks again for checking us out, and I hope you enjoy it.