The thing I like about this city, the one I am about to leave, is that I own property here and thus, if I wanted, I could procure a pet or a roommate. There is a wide range of cultural activities here as well, and there are plenty of urban farming and gardening opportunities. And, had I gone back to work full-time, I could have potentially sold my condo and bought a house. I also liked having family within driving distance.
At the end of 2013, however, I had three job possibilities, and none of them were in this city. One was in a tiny rural town, more of a bedroom community really, about thirty miles away. I could have bought a house there and planted a garden and gotten a dog and maybe even some backyard chickens. There was not much there in the way of a town center, however, and probably few single people. There were no other businesses and opportunities for meeting men seemed slim (although you never know). My family would remain in driving distance, but I feared I’d feel like an exile there. There was one homey, artsy restaurant and a few yoga places, but that was about it.
The second possibility was a high-level job back in the L.A. area in a desirable beach town. Walking/biking commute to work. Lots of single people and more opportunities to mingle with the opposite sex. I’d have to go back to paying high rent for an apartment though and wouldn’t be able to get a pet or have a garden. And of course I’d be far from family again.
The third option was to return to my old org, working in an urban setting in L.A. Some of the openings were appealing but logistically problematic.
In the end, I went with option two.
Just as I was packing up, I received a phone call about an interview for an ideal job three miles away from my condo here. It was a dark moment for me. Did I let myself down by not determinedly sticking it out here? But that job opened months ago, and after I applied, they reopened it. There are also several internal candidates, and I’ve been passed over many times already by that organization. So I tell myself that it probably wouldn’t have happened for me anyway.
A tenant for my condo dropped into my lap (relative of a friend), so I’m renting the place out here, at least for the first year. The tenant is about the same age I was when I bought the place. She has the same last name as me and a similar first name. We worked abroad for the same organization.
Perhaps it’s a sign that this place was right for me at one stage of my life, but it’s time to move on permanently.