I was born in Cleveland in October of 1965 and have lived here for all but 14 years of my life. 10 years I lived in Phoenix, Arizona and four years I lived in Athens, Ohio.
Cleveland is a small city with that "big city" flavor. I have always thought of it as the bastard child of New York and Chicago. It has "flavors" of both of those big cities but a uniqueness all it's own.
Throughout the years our city has gone through many changes. There was a time when over 800,000 people lived in the Cleveland metropolitan area. This was a time when our lake and river were known to be anything less than clean. A time when there was a definite devision between the east and west sides. A time when manufacturing, steel and the auto industry were it's backbone and heartbeat.
Today, the population has dwindled down to about 400,000 residents. Most of the manufacturing is gone. The lake and river while cleaner, most still wouldn't swim in either. The steel industry is all but gone as is the automobile industry while still there in some aspects is pretty much gone.