I moved from the East Coast to the North (Minnesota). Same country. Should not be that big of an adjustment. But it is.
Change is not bad but can be challenging. In Virginia I could go into any grocery store and buy beer and wine. I could buy beer and wine at the drug store or the 7 Eleven. Here I have to go to a separate liquor store to buy any kind of liquor. First time I went to Trader Joe’s I panicked. No wine? Luckily they had their wine store just next door.
Food shopping takes getting used to as well. What grocery store is good for what kind of food? Where do I find my favorite things? Or do I have to discover all new food items? I live right across the street from the Farmer’s Market so when the temperature gets to a manageable number, it will open and I’m sure problem will be solved. In the meantime, I wander around trying to understand what I am looking at.
Another thing I noticed is the food tastes better here. Maybe I’m imagining it but it tastes closer to real food. I guess it is closer to the farm. People eat more locally. And it is easier to eat more locally.
People talk to you here. On the East Coast people rarely talk to you or acknowledge you. Here random people talk to you all the time. And most people are friendly. All very strange. Am I supposed to respond? Should I talk to these people or pretend I don’t hear them? I think I am supposed to talk to them.
Traffic. There isn’t any. Okay during rush hour there may be some crowded highways but that’s about it. No sitting in stop and go traffic for hours at a time. It is like living in a dream. I can go places without being obsessed by how much traffic there is going to be. And the really amazing incredible thing is once I get there I can find a place to park. That like never happened on the East Coast.
The average high this year has been 20 degrees F. Not so terrible. At least we don’t have the snow the East Coast got this year. Was able to avoid that nightmare. I do admit, though, the wind can cool you down. It’s cold out on the plains.
The music/art/theater scene is amazing. The DC area has nothing like this. It is local and accessible. People are doing interesting stuff. I live in the middle of a thriving artist community. I love it.
So challenges, yes. Problems, no. Adapt, Improvise, Learn….
How fun to find yourself in a place that is so different. I expect you are much closer to your food sources out there in the hinterlands. What inspired you to move across the country like this?
It was time for a change and wanted to be closer to family
Surprised that the theater/music scene is amazing – better than Washington. It sounds like most things, except for the weather, are better. It probably depends a lot on the area and the town where you’re living. Sounds like you’re near a big university or metropolitan area. Your adjustment seems to be going well. Will be interested to hear more in a few months.
How are you doing Kathy? I laughed at your first paragraph as the no wine on Sunday or not in grocery stores drives me mad! Would love to meet you for lunch. Now that life has settled I’m available so let me know via email. I love all the great ethnic places in St Paul! I live by Lake Harriet in SW Minneapolis. 😊
Sounds amazing! I want to live there too!