"The rents in D.C. are getting downright ridiculous," Gabrielle Pauley said. "Anyway, I think they're trying to chase black folks out of D.C. and put them in P.G. You know, money does talk loudly.
"I like D.C., but my family has to survive," she continued, explaning why after 15 years in Washington she moved to Prince George's County.
Pauley, 37, her husband and three of their five children live in a single-family, detached home in the heart of Glenarden. They pay $200 a month for their two-bedroom house, which is surrounded by a large yard.
"For one thing, I doubt if we could find many detached homes in D.C.," she said. "And if you start talking about price, you're talking about at least $300 a month."
The Pauleys moved to Prince George's in 1974 after a long and frustrating search for an apartment in Southeast Washington. Over the years, the one-bedroom apartment on Maryland Avenue where they paid nearly $300 in rent and utilities had become far too small for their growing needs.
Pauley could hardly find a landlord in Southeast Washington who had an apartment in her price range that would allow more than two children. The few who did could only offer deteriorating houses in unsafe neighborhoods. So at the urging of friends in Prince George's County, Pauley packed her furniture and moved.
Her husband, Lawrence, 45, is a crane operator for the Army Corps of Engineers and supports the family on his $15,000 annual salary.
"This neighborhood is definitely together," Pauley said. "Everbody is concerned about making Glenarden a good place to live. I see it evertime I've gone to a town meeting. People are definitely trying to do what is best for the community."
A new recreational center and a library were recently completed, she added.
"My kids would have had to go into somebody else's neighborhood to find these things in the District," she said.
Crime is also less of a problem.
"Over here, you can leave your door open and nobody will bother anything," she said. "Over in D..c., you could lock your door and still get robbed."
However, there are a few new problems. "If you don't have a car out here, you're lost," she said. "We're lucky -- we have one.
"The nearest bus stop is in front of the library (about half a mile away). It stops running at 9 on weekday nights and doesn't run at all on weekends."
Pauley also believes that having a car affects social life.
"One thing I can say about D.C. is that there was always somewhere nearby that you could go to have a good time. Out here, you can hang it up."
The Pauleys have also had to adapt to court-ordered busing. Ivan, the 13-year-old, has to get up at 6 a.m. to go to Beltsville Junior High School, nine miles away. He only had to walk two blocks to school in Washington.
"It doesn't make any sense to me," his mother said. "They put him on a bus to ride all the way to Beltsville to go to a school that is predominantly black. I can't understand it."
She also wonders if the education her son got in Washington wasn't better.
"Ivan was having trouble with his reading and his math when we lived in Southeast," she said."But the teachers put him into a special program to help out. Out here, you have to wonder sometimes if the teachers even care."
Despite her dissatifsfaction with the Prince George's County Schools, Pauley says she doubts if she will move back into the District anytime soon.