I am at my beach house just two blocks from a beautiful state beach along the Pacific Ocean. People find out I have a house and wonder why I spend most of my time in the Bay Area. It used to be because my kids were there, but now two of them have left, and only one remains. I think about moving here from time to time, but there are many reasons why I haven’t yet.
1. Newlyweds and Nearly-Deads – that’s what people say about the population here.
2. Foggy weather — it can get depressing. When it’s sunny, it’s glorious. When it’s foggy, it’s gloomy.
3. The power goes out a lot – during winter storms, this is true.
4. It’s not diverse – unless you count the tourists speaking a dozen different languages.
5. It’s far from the night life – can’t argue with that.
6. People here are either super rich or resentful of those who are – I see that.
7. It’s mostly solitary people with their little dogs – I see that, too. It’s a big dog town with many thrift stores dedicated to rescuing animals.
8. Most of my friends are in the Bay Area – there’s always someone around to do something with.
9. It’s cold during the summers, fall, and spring, and winter. I am used to being warm for at least two of those seasons in the East Bay.
That being said, it’s a nice place to escape to. Someday I may settle here, but I hope it’s not for a long time. I need people in my life, no matter what we are doing. I would miss my hiking group, my singing groups, and my singles’ club, although I have to say I am tired of the drinking/dancing/dating/hamster wheel of happiness. There are other ways to have fun.
Lately I’ve noticed that guys either want to not get involved, or they want to get involved so fast that you can’t catch your breath. One minute you’re on a date, and the next minute they are planning their life around you. That’s a little too much togetherness too fast if you ask me. How can you even be sure you want to spend that much time with someone you barely know? I want to get to know a person before he starts moving in. I also don’t want to be his nurse with a purse, as I overheard two 80 year old ladies say in a thrift store down here.
I had one Bay Area guy complain to me that the meet-up women are all alike.
“You sleep with one of them, and the rest won’t even talk to you if you don’t call the first woman again.”
Wow! He thinks he’s in his twenties, and no one will notice if he’s a one-night-stand jerk? Guess what! Women talk. And if they support the sister code, they will give a gal a heads up if the guy is going to wham-bam-thank-you-ma’am some unsuspecting soul.
People my age have lots of baggage, and they bring it to the relationship. Maybe that’s why so many of them give up and move to the beach with their little dog and a bookcase full of light reading.
I don’t want anyone who wants me so that I can take care of them. I’ve done a lifetime of caring for people – husband, children, sister, other people’s children. Now I want to do what I want to do, like hop on a plane and join my friend in Paris, or go sing next year on the East coast with my chorus.
Or just get in the car and drive. I don’t need to be home to make anyone dinner. I don’t need to call and get permission from anyone, or negotiate with them. If I want to read a whole book before I get dressed, I can do that, too. If I want to eat lunch at 3:00 and skip dinner, then that is what I will do.
Just as soon as I walk the whining dog, who sees me sitting here typing (when there is a whole world out there to sniff and pee on), and she doesn’t like it one bit.
Couldda Wouldda Shouldda
I should’ve rescued a less needy dog. Maybe I’d have my uncle’s WWII story written by now.