People of Charlotte, meet Katy Post! Katy gives us longtime Charlotteans a newbie perspective on Charlotte. Let’s look through her lens for the next couple of minutes and simmer down about our traffic (or at least try to)!
You’re relatively new to Charlotte! How long have you been a resident?
We moved here in January of 2018!
While my husband was finishing up his fellowship, we lived in New Jersey, right across from New York City. We knew we wanted to move and when he was offered a job opportunity in Charlotte, we didn’t hesitate! We had already visited Charlotte, so the city was on our radar—call it luck with a little bit of planning. And with family in West Virginia, we didn’t want to relocate too far away.
People often move to the South for warmer weather. Did weather come into your decision making?
Charlotte’s weather is so great! We will take these rainy days over the snow and cold any day! It’s pretty awesome to walk around in a sweatshirt in the month of March.
From a cultural perspective, what struck you the most about the Queen City?
Charlotte is a very young city compared to where we were (NJ and Huntersville for one year). Prior to our move into Charlotte, we didn’t find as many people who we meshed well with. I love how we have now connected to others who are in a similar place in life.
Something that I noticed, probably within the first couple of weeks of being here, is just how nice everyone is. Shortly after we moved, I had an experience at a bank where I was getting something notarized for my license to practice therapy in NC. I was really taken off guard when the person standing next to me asked what it was for and then congratulated me.
What excites you about Charlotte?
It’s really cool to be a part of a city that is constantly growing. A new place pops up every week and keeps it interesting.
How do you typically find out about what’s new in Charlotte?
Instagram! I follow specific accounts that keep us in the know (Charlotte Five, Loca Carolinas) and search specific hashtags. You can find new places just by driving around too!
Speaking of driving, what’s your opinion on the traffic here?
It’s not that bad. Well maybe it’s because I still have my NJ/NYC glasses on, but coming from where we were, traffic is nothing by comparison. In fact, when we first moved here, I tended to overestimate how long it would take me to get somewhere—I was so accustomed to building in so much commute time. The traffic here is manageable, not overwhelming.
Do you always drive to get around Charlotte?
Definitely not. I love the walkability of Charlotte and try to walk anytime I can. We also utilize the light rail.
What or who is getting you outdoors these days?
Currently, I am in transition career-wise, and love filling my days as a dog-walker for Skipper. While walking 8 to 10 dogs a day, I typically walk 6 to 7 miles. I love it. I am reminded to stay in the moment.
So what did you do before hanging out with man and woman’s best friend?
I have a master’s degree in mental health counseling. I left my last role because of differences in values. I am leaning towards private practice, but right now, I am enjoying less stress in my life.
When people ask what you do, how have you reevaluated that answer?
Rather than saying, “I’m a therapist,” I now say, “No, that’s my job and not who I really am.” Instead I talk about what it means to work as a therapist. We are more than our job titles.
Did anything surprise you about the city of Charlotte?
Honestly, I was really surprised by the lack of diversity, especially coming from the New York City area which is literally a melting pot of every background. If and when we have children, I want them to be raised in a diverse population. When I found out that Charlotte ranks 28th in diversity, I realized how much work the city has to do. We need to look at our leadership in the public and private sectors.
What area of Charlotte do you reside in?
Prior to moving uptown for a bigger place, we were renting in Plaza Midwood—an area we love and still frequent. Apartments in Charlotte are pricey, especially the newer ones. So we moved into an “older” apartment in uptown (the building is 10 years old) that was more affordable for the space we needed. When we start looking for a house to buy, we will definitely look at Plaza Midwood and NoDa.
Favorite Plaza Midwood hangouts?
Undercurrent, Central Coffee, and Moxie Mercantile are some of my favorite spots; I love supporting local artists and businesses.
Are you into Charlotte’s brewery scene?
Yes! I love hanging out at a brewery, but because my husband is gluten free, we don’t go as often. When we do, we typically go to Wooden Robot Brewery—the founder’s wife is gluten free, so all of their beers are too. You can’t even tell! Birdsong Brewery offers amazing tasting beers. And Resident Culture offers great beers with a really cool, laid back vibe.
Since moving to Charlotte, what are some of the out-of-town places you have enjoyed visiting?
My husband’s job takes him all over North and South Carolina, as well as Savannah, GA, so I try to travel with him when I can. We really love Asheville, Wilmington, Charleston, and Savannah! We are looking forward to hiking the NC mountains this summer—it was a very busy wedding season last year!
We are happy to be Charlotteans!
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Check out Mixed Nuts: A story and discussion about diversity and inclusion for children