Today is my one-month anniversary since I moved from San Francisco, California to Charleston, South Carolina. Those who know me and follow my journey daily know I have decided to move across the country, and you have asked me what the reason was. I promised to make the list of my WHY, so here it is!
I felt caged in the city I grew up in. There are way too many people everywhere. It feels cramped. Wherever you go, restaurant, store, and even the road, you have to wait in line. The average wait is usually 30 to 45 minutes minimum. Speaking of waiting on the road…
Traffic. San Francisco no longer has a rush hour. There is guaranteed traffic 24/7. What does this do? This causes a lot of frustration and anger on the road, which leads me to the next point…
The people. Where are my friendly people at? When you want to switch lanes, people do not let you pass. Instead, they drive faster, so you don’t cut in front of them. You might even get lucky and see them flip a bird. TIP: don’t turn on your signal lights. Just breeze through the lane. I’m pretty nice in this situation, and I’ll cut while turning on my signal lights and say thank you at the end. The less time you give the drivers to think, the less mean they will be to you. True story.
The cost of living is too expensive – aka you pay for everything, including your existence. According to salary.com, the cost of living in San Francisco is 3.1% higher than in New York, NY. Way to go, San Francisco! We beat Los Angeles with traffic, and we beat New York with the cost of living. There’s no wonder there’s a great division between the filthy rich and the middle-class. People are on edge all the time. I can understand why they are upset. It is stressful to live in the most expensive city in the country. Not to mention, you pay $7 for bridge tolls, $4/gallon on gas, $5/hour in meter parking, and if you want to cut the traffic on the road, pay extra to go on the fast lane. Soon they will charge you for breathing and sneezing too. It is no wonder why there are so many homeless around. People live paycheck to paycheck, and it is becoming challenging to survive in the city you once called home.
Increase in crime. There was a time when the bad guys would steal your stuff during nighttime when everyone was asleep. Not anymore. You get robbed in daylight, sometimes while you’re sitting in the car, waiting for the light to turn green, or while your vehicle is parked right outside the coffee shop. I witnessed so much crime happening in daylight the past few years; my family has been affected by it too. The latest crime trend is having your catalytic converter stolen. Yup, that happened to my mom while she was at work, and it continues to happen to a lot of my neighbors as well.
It has become the new normal for the Bay Area locals. We love the city, but to what extent?
I was tired of feeling anxious anytime I left my car. I was tired of waiting in long lines. I was tired of spending so much money on things that don’t cost as much if you left the state. I was tired of having to pay for my existence, and I did not feel at peace.
So, I had enough. I felt like San Francisco drove me out. Yes, I miss Bob the Fog (that is what I call the Bay Area fog). I miss all my friends and the memories I made, but I do not regret moving.
South Carolina is the nicest state in the country. Google it, and you’ll get a list of cities in South Carolina that have the nicest people! I can feel it on the road too. They let you pass; they will move away if they’re driving slower than you. They say thank you on the road and even smile at you!
What traffic? Okay, there’s a little bit of traffic on the road, but Charleston’s 5–15-minute traffic is a piece of cake!
Green and full of nature. Palm trees everywhere! I feel like I am on vacation and in a public zoo every single day! Geese walk around my neighborhood, deer roaming around, and apparently, there are alligators too. I have yet to meet one.
There is a lot of history in Charleston downtown. I am still exploring Charleston, so this will be a post for another day.
Safe and peaceful. People are so lovely; my soul feels at peace. People look out for one another here.
The weather is warm and sunny. It can get humid, and I’m told it would get hotter later in the summer. Luckily there are so many beaches around to cool off, and it is nice and breezy in the evening!
My biggest culture shock so far has been the insects. There are so many different kinds. I am learning about them and adjusting to them every single day. It has been a fantastic experience living in Charleston, and I love it all. I found peace, which is what I wanted and was seeking.
Living in Charleston, I genuinely feel like I am on vacation, doing the work I love every single day. The pace of life is slower here, which is excellent. When you take it slow, you get things done faster because you are in the present moment, enjoying the moment in front of you rather than when you are always on edge, stressed, rushing to get from one place to the other. You are prone to make mistakes and cannot perform at your best.
So, this is why I moved, and it has been the best decision I made. If you do not feel at home in your current environment, perhaps it is a sign that you need to change your setting.
Wishing you the best because you deserve the best.