California Pros and Cons


Sorry for the delay in posts, youse guys. You know how it goes, you have the best of intentions and then Netflix drops a whole season of Marvel’s Daredevil on you at once and you just lose track of your entire life.

Oh oh, and I forgot to put the little flashback timeframe tag here. Ya walk away for a few days and you just forget everything, am I right?

Seven months ago…

I’m not sure there’s anything more depressing than expecting to be relieved only to feel defeat.  It was like an Acme anvil dropping on my head: knowing that Lance was still not happy in California and that no job was going to help that…well, being the selfless hero that I am, I knew at that point we were moving back to Pennsylvania. It was only a matter of time.

To be fair, I wasn’t 100% sold on California at this point either–I certainly missed the creature comforts I’d developed over seven years in Philadelphia–but I think it’s safe to say I wasn’t struggling with California as much as Lance was.  Disneyland wasn’t a Band-Aid for him like it was for me.

From his earliest challenges finding a job in California, Lance and I had discussed, with varying degrees of seriousness, moving back to Philly if this all went to shit. More on that exit strategy in a future post, but as the move back became more likely, I started asking advice of some pals in order to make sure we weren’t making another big mistake.

My friend and yours, Kelly Bakes, suggested drafting a pros and cons list about California. Why should we stay? Why should we go?

Pro: Weather. One of the major reasons we moved to the desert was so that we’d never have to deal with snow and rain again. Have you ever walked a dog when it’s downpouring? THE WORST. Anyway, some consistency would be nice.

Con: Weather. The consistency was messed up. We were in California for seven months and it rained MAYBE three times. Every other day was sunny, high of 90, wash, rise, repeat. This may sound appealing, but it could feel like a Groundhog Day, Twilight Zone-ish experience.

Pro: Relatively close proximity to the beach, shopping, LA, Disneyland, Palm Springs, and San Diego.

Con: Unlike Californians who have been nurtured into loving a good drive (which is how they must tolerate all that traffic), us jerks from the Northeast hate being in the car for more then 20 minutes at a time. Having to drive an hour in any direction to do something was torture. And the price of gas in California…!

Pro: California is made for people who like being outdoors-y!

Con: …but we’re lazy.

Pro: We made some good friends pretty quickly while we were in CA.

Con: Well…there’s no downside of having friends all over the country, but in Lance’s case, it’s pretty hard to separate yourself from the people you’ve known for 20 years. Social media connects us all more than ever before, sure, but being physically present still makes a difference.

Pro: Disneyland!

Con: Lance hates Disneyland.

Pro: In California, you never have to wait for a table at the Cheesecake Factory!

Con: There’s no downside to that. In Pennsylvania, we recently waited THREE HOURS for a mommyfudging table at the Cheesecake Factory. I mean, what the crap.

Pro: We should stay to give it a chance. We’d only been in California seven months!

Con: How long should you wait for a place to feel like home before you throw in the towel?

…and that was the question, really. How long should we wait to find happiness? When would we know if this was going to work? Were we “giving up” if we moved back to Philly?

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