Those lists of the "Best Places to_____" ---fill in the blank, live, drink, have kids...are everywhere online.
I saw one Sunday on www.Livability.com that claimed to have found the 100 Best Places to Live in America.
Not a single one is in Alabama.
In fact, except for a smattering in South Carolina, Florida and Texas, Dixie is apparently living hell.
The website seems to love the cold. Almost all of their 100 are in cold, Northern states.
Last year the same site published a list of the best small towns...and they found three in the Deep South, though not a single one in Alabama:
Retaining a small-town feel despite its proximity to Atlanta, Decatur features four historic districts along with a vibrant entertainment and nightlife scene thanks to popular venues like Eddie's Attic, Wahoo Grill, Brick Store Pub, Carpe Diem and The Square Pub. This progressive community includes Agnes Scott College, Columbia Theological Seminary and Georgia Perimeter College, while Decatur City School District has earned several academic accolades.
One in Arkansas:
Home to North Arkansas College as well as a highly regarded Harrison School District, Harrison is known for outdoor recreation thanks to its access to five major lakes as well as Crooked Creek, a nationally ranked smallmouth bass fishery that flows through the city. Dozens of independent restaurants give residents many dining options. Numerous parks and trails along with the excellent care provided by North Arkansas Regional Medical Center help keep residents healthy.
and even one in Mississippi:
Mostly known as a college town, thanks to the presence of the University of Mississippi, Oxford offers families a great place to live. It's been hailed as one of the Best College Towns. Oxford City Schools earned nationally designated “Star” rating – the highest ranking available. The community has a thriving and diverse music scene that includes the headquarters of renowned blues label Fat Possum Records, and Oxford has 50 buildings on the National Register of Historic Places along with an award-winning Baptist Memorial Hospital-North Mississippi. A collection of restaurants in Oxford keep residents full. See where Oxford ranked on our Best Small Towns 2013 list.
Just call us Alabama. The Invisible.
I like the news magazine The Week, and I look in each issue at their featured homes-for-sale pages.
Sometimes they group them by category, like Homes with indoor pools. Sometimes it is geographic, like Homes on the Coast. The week of 2-6-16 features "Stone Homes".
But most of the time it's just "best homes" for sale. As long as they are not in Alabama. I have yet to see a single home in my adopted state. And that's after many years of looking.
I've written to the editors asking about it. Watch this space.