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Moving to California

So I’m moving to California to seek out new opportunities. This should be no surprise to anyone who’s known me, since I’ve rattled on about it incessantly in one form or another (not to mention basically driving/flying down every chance I get). I’ve wanted to live there my entire career since that’s where the action always was and it’s a beautiful place, but it was always a big jump from wherever I was. I almost moved there last summer but instead landed in Redmond; I couldn’t really afford to live there for my remote gig and I didn’t know anyone. Since then things have changed, and I’m in a better position to try it and I’m well motivated.

Finding a new place was tricky. I have no idea where I’d spend the majority of my time there, and it turns out the Bay Area is pretty big. I swear there’s time/distance dilation there. As a random example, traveling one way it only took five minutes to get to my destination, but going the other direction seemed to take 30 (even without traffic). I really love the hills and park system of the East Bay, but any job I work at would very likely be on the peninsula somewhere or in the South Bay. Over New Years vacation I drove around a lot, checking out areas of interests and neighborhoods. At first I thought San Mateo was a good compromise, but the rental prices still made me sick.

On a friend’s advice I looked at Fremont on the day I left and liked what I saw. Really nice area and rentals were relatively cheaaaaap, although nightlife is non-existent from what I can tell. I decided I probably wouldn’t be going into SF all the time so the extra $$$ to live closer wasn’t worth it. Fremont is also a bit sprawl-y, but it’s good since I have a large vehicle. I looked at the traffic maps and decided was acceptable. I flew back down the next weekend to look at more units and finally signed on one. Bonus: it faces Mission Peak. It remains to be seen if this where I want to stay long term, traffic/social/life/work may dictate otherwise, so at least I was able to get a shorter lease for when I want to uproot.

I thought about trying to move this weekend, but looking over what needed to be done and getting quotes from movers, it just wasn’t possible. Plus I wanted to hang out with my peeps more before I split town! Looks like I’ll be moving myself, by the time I rent a truck, drive down, fly back, drive my pickup down, I’m still saving 50% off of what using movers would cost me. It may all be a horrible idea to not use movers, we’ll see! The plan is to move this upcoming weekend, but the details are still in flux.

It’s all exciting and surreal and nerve wracking!

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