Is the bloom off the rose?

It’s been just over a month since I packed up and moved over 2,000 miles to live in Northern California. One month is a really short period of time to form a valid opinion about such a life-changing decision, but I’m starting to feel some discomfort and doubts. This post is essentially just a dump of my stream of consciousness/thoughts.

  • Will I ever make friends locally?
  • I enjoy going to weekly knitting group and have met some nice people, but I’d like to do more than just a once a week thing socially.
  • I need to figure out a stable to go to. Getting back into riding will connect me with some friendly people.
  • But if I spend time riding, that’s more time away from Hannah dog.
  • Poor Hannah dog. She looks so bored a lot of the time. I’m her only companion now.
  • Is it fair to leave my dog alone so much? Am I giving her a good life?
  • Stop the guilt trip about the dog! She has a comfortable home, she gets regular attention/exercise/meals, and when you adopted her you saved her from almost certain death!
  • Still, I need to make more “special time” with my dog. Maybe I can take her to the big park today for a walk.
  • How is walking my dog by myself helping me make more local friends?
  • Too bad Hannah isn’t tolerant of other dogs; if she was I could socialize with other people walking their dogs, or take her to the dog park.


  • I can’t believe how much public transportation costs around here!
  • I can’t believe how much housing costs around here!
  • Damn, the new state payroll taxes are more than twice as much as my old state taxes!
  • Can I really afford to live here?
  • Of course I can, I just need to make some adjustments to my budget.
  • Hmm…will I be able to afford to ride regularly here?
  • Too bad I don’t have someone to share expenses with, like a roommate.
  • Getting a roommate here would mean sharing a bathroom; I’m not so keen on sharing a bathroom.
  • Too bad I can’t get back into Airbnb to earn some side cash (because of that whole “share the single bathroom” thing that I want to avoid).
  • Maybe there are some more things I could sell, just to downsize a bit more and to free up a little cash.
  • OK, I’m not really poor. I earn a really good salary compared to most of the people in this country. Although, most of the people in this country don’t live in an area with such a high cost of living.
  • I wonder how people with lower incomes in this area manage to live here.
  • It very likely involves sharing their bathroom.



6 thoughts on “Is the bloom off the rose?

  1. All of these feelings are really, really normal. I’d suggest going to church but I know that’s not your thing. You are in a very high-cost area – and it’s quite probable that the people who work locally don’t live in town – they live farther out, where it’s less expensive (think Vale, CO – back in the day no one could afford to live there – everyone lived outside of town and commuted in). This is very common in resort/vacation areas. The majority of people with lower incomes are not living where you’re living unless they are living in a family home likely purchased decades ago. I found making friends in SoCal was challenging, but everything there was behind a gate of some sort. I think you’re going to meet plenty of people and build your new routine. Give it time 🙂


  2. Sounds like jitters to me! I don’t think you’ve been there nearly long enough to start panicking LOL Definitely make it a point to do things you love alone for a while. So go to a knitting group, look into riding again, get on the list for the local library system and go to their events, etc. Even with your dog, maybe look into some training courses or something so that she can become more tolerable of dogs– at least enough to get you into a dog park. You and Hannah will totally be ok, just have to get out there and make the city your own!


  3. You will be fine! To meet local people and make friends you could look in the library for book clubs. I just joined a book club that I found through my neighborhood website Everyblock. Is there something like a YMCA or local recreation center where you could join a volleyball team or something like that? I also like the idea of training to get your Hannah more comfortable with other dogs.

    I know it is a high cost of living area out there, but I am positive it will be worth it. To remind you, I slogged through lakes of gray slush to get to my office the other day. I go from Union to Clark and Wacker. I was wearing 2 of everything — longjohns under my pants, 2 pairs of socks, undershirt, long-sleeved shirt and sweater, gloves under my mittens, a wool cap under the hood of my down coat, and a scarf wrapped around my face. To me, the worst thing about winter is all the crap I need to wear to keep warm. I end up looking like Jabba the Hutt and I creep along like I’m 90 because I’m so afraid of falling on the ice.

    Keep me posted on how you’re doing, and I can remind you about why you decided to move there!


    • #1, do you know anybody in Napa? ‘cuz I don’t… I think the closest I know anybody is Livermore. Well, I have a second cousin in Vallejo. But I don’t even remember my second cousin’s name and it’s been a couple decades…


  4. I have to admit I haven’t even tried to get out and make friends here and I’ve been here years 😛 but I’m sure you’ll start finding your comfort zone soon. I can wave across the way at you, though 🙂 and perhaps we can meet in the middle somewhere. (We’re pretty far apart.)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s