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Hello!

Once again, I’m writing this on the train from D.C. to New York, as in-between landscapes zoom by. I love writing on trains and buses and in airports. Sometimes these places are flurries of activity, but I don’t mind. The buzz has a white noise effect on me, balancing the chaos inside my brain. When I feel completely out of sync, though, I appreciate the zen of a quiet spot in a park or an empty corner of a museum. As CityLab has written before, cities are made up of energetic and still moments—and the really good ones offer their residents enough of both.

I’m curious: What are your favorite spots to decompress? These could be places you go to people-watch, or to relish a book in solitude. Hit me up at tmisra@theatlantic.com.

What we’ve been writing:

“The rude welcome to the Postal Service quickly taught me mail delivery is no leisurely stroll through the neighborhood, dismantling the idyllic image of a smiling Mr. McFeeley handing out birthday cards in ‘Mister Rogers’ neighborhood.’” ¤ RIP, Jonathan Gold—L.A.’s culinary flaneur. ¤ A local news station made over, and moved into, Omaha’s abandoned train station. ¤ The missed opportunities inside the skyscraper in Skyscraper. ¤ Why won’t London’s night czar save Hackney’s night life? ¤ The saving of Cairo, Illinois. ¤

(Martha Park/CityLab)

What we’ve been taking in:

America’s new Ellis Island. (New York Times) ¤ “It’s 1:13 pm on a Sunday in Los Angeles, and four dozen women in knee pads are snaked around one another on the floor in the fetal position.” (Time) ¤ Examining Indian masculinity, by photographing barber shop haircuts. (Scroll.in) ¤ How Mohawk ironworkers put their stamp on New York City. (6sqft) ¤ The science behind that distinctive thrift store smell. (New York Times) ¤ Hamilton, Missouri: the Disneyland of Quilting. (Forbes)  ¤ “But I don’t want to live in a spaceship.” (n + 1) ¤ A love (-hate) letter to Seattle. (Seattle Times) ¤ The story behind “& Sons” signage. (Mel) ¤

View from the ground:

@aesthetvck illuminated an off-the-beaten-path moment in Chicago; @homageproject documented the busy bike lanes of Osaka; @kumar_k_ravi photographed a tight alleyway in Indore; and @gigionearth captured the immense tallness of the Toronto City Hall.

Tag us on Instagram with the hashtag #citylabontheground!

You won’t see Navigator in your inbox on August 10 because I’ll be on vacation then. But I’ll be back in a month, hopefully with some good stories to share!

Over and out,

Tanvi

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