Over the years I’ve lived in many different places. Some for short periods of time, others for longer periods of time. I’ve always found my niche; there has always been a comfortable place for me, wherever I’ve lived…except here.
Is it possible to have an aversion to a particular place? What I find interesting is that I always thought that I’d like it here. When I thought of places that were “ideal,” one of the first places that would come to mind is the San Francisco Bay Area. The idea of being close to the ocean, having consistent, warm, yet not too hot weather had always appealed to me. The concept of being around liberal minded people who believe as much in personal freedoms as I do was something that I really wanted.
I’ve been here for over four years now. So far I have yet to truly connect with anyone other than my significant other. Friends I’ve made seem only interested in getting something from me, be it money, volunteered time, a christian conversion or whatever else they might be after. No one seems to be concerned with getting to know me, for who I am…which happens to be a pretty awesome person. Almost everyone here “flakes out” on plans (which I’m certainly not used to). Someone will make plans to do something, then back out at the last minute. I never dealt with issues like that until I got here. All the friends I’ve had in the past were loyal, and honest…not flaky.
The weather isn’t quite what I’d expected either. Instead of a consistent, mild climate, there is more of a two season climate. Either it’s rainy or it’s not. During the rainy season it can get, and stay pretty chilly, especially in the city. If you go to SF, regardless of what time of year it is, it’s always wise to bring a sweater. It may not get cold enough to snow, but having 6-7 months of rain that keeps the temperature under 60 degrees is not my idea of paradise. This climate has caused my sinuses to chronically clog up, which adds to my displeasure.
So what is my ideal place? I’ve thought long and hard about this question. I can’t just pick a place off of a map and say, “that’s it!” My place is more hypothetical. First, I want to get a job in my field. I worked very hard to get a degree, and graduated with a 3.4 GPA. Sure there are people who got better grades than I did, but there are far more who did worse. I’d like to find find a group of people who share some of my interests, particularly within my neighborhood. I want to live within walking distance of basic things like: a grocery store, a coffee house, a hair stylist, a couple of restaurants, and so on. That way I don’t have to be forced to drive everywhere I need to go. I want to feel a part of something…a community. So many places are swallowed up by the bigger cities that the smaller sense of community is lost. I hope to find a place that has preserved that intimate sense of community. In the end, I want a place that feels like a home. It takes a whole lot more than a building to make a home. The people in and around that building are what truly make it a home.