I moved to San Antonio, TX about 7 1/2 years ago…from San Diego, CA. I know what you are thinking… ‘Why would you leave a place like San Diego with its beaches and perfect weather to move to Texas?’ The short answer is I moved my family here to be closer to my now former in-laws. The long answer involves a more attractive cost of living, friendlier people, the thought that ever getting ahead in a place like San Diego was going to be tough, supporting my ex-wife’s wish to be closer to her family, and a better overall school system for my young daughter. Since moving here in 2004, my brother and his family relocated here as did my mother. So now more of my immediate family lives here than anywhere else. Also, my now almost 9 year old daughter is thriving here… doing really well in school and growing up close to family. So it would seem that I am destined to be here for awhile. I do miss San Diego though. I moved there for college in 1986 and lived there for 18 years. Every time I visit there I feel like I am at home. It is kind of like the old friend who you can lose contact with for an extended period of time and pick up right where you left off months or years later. People ask me what I most miss about it and I tell them ‘Only 3 things…. The weather (72 and sunny most of the year), the beach (enough said), and the fact that I can get a breakfast there that doesn’t involve a tortilla!’
That said…there are several things I have come to appreciate about living in San Antonio…and of course several things that drive me nuts.
Things I appreciate
– People are really pretty friendly here. Very genuine and real. Californians, depending on where you are in California, have a tendency to be aloof.
– People are damn patriotic here. There is a reason Texas was its own Republic (essentially its own country) for awhile and that spirit is alive and well in the Lone Star State.
– Texas has a cool flag
– Floating the river is pretty damn cool. I came a bit late to this party but I enjoy it a lot… It just remains to be seen if legislation passed last year will screw up the experience for everyone.
– Went to the rodeo for the first time this year…actually went 3 times in the past couple of weeks since it just ended. Very cool experience. I don’t have a hat and I have one pair of cowboy boots which are awesome but hurt my feet…but I did buy a belt this year and who knows, my wardrobe just might grow over time. That said…I don’t think i will ever be a pearl snap button shirt guy, I will never put a pinch between my cheek and gum unless it is sunflower seeds, I don’t see myself ever donning a big ass belt buckle or a pair of Wranglers and I am not really a two-stepper…though I suppose I wouldn’t be adverse to learning.
– I enjoy many country artists and have a fair amount of country music on my iPod though it is not the most predominant genre.
– I love the fact that I can go to a BBQ place and order food by the pound…
Things I could do without
– Texas drivers… Never in my life have I seen so many people who are completely dumbfounded by a Yield sign… In California, yielding is pretty fluid…it is usually known as merging. In Texas, many believe that Yield means Stop which might not be a problem if everyone believed this and behavior was consistent. Sadly, it is not. And a 4 way Stop… total and utter chaos!
– The weather can be very extreme. Last summer I think we had 90+ days straight of 100+ degree temperatures. Add in the lovely humidity and it is fairly unpleasant at times. In addition, in the winter there will be an 88 degree day followed by a 28 degree day. This makes dressing and staying cold and flu free a challenge. Now granted, we don’t get snow here except on the rarest of occasions, which is nice, but the wind chill can be significant.
– Allergies – San Antonio is one of the worst cities in the country for allergies based primarily on the abundance of Mountain Cedar trees here and high mold counts from heavy rains and humid conditions during the summer.
– Hunting and Taxidermy – Hunting is not my thing…that said, I understand that it is a passion for many people and I realize that it is necessary to protect the land, keep the herds of deer and other animals healthy etc… I can respect hunters who feed their families with the deer/pigs/etc that they hunt. What bugs me are the people who kill for sport and to get a trophy mounted on their wall. It doesn’t take much courage to sit in deer blind and take the life of an animal that never saw it coming so that you can stuff it and mount it on your wall and brag to your friends about it… Not my thing.
– Not the biggest fan of Tex-Mex cooking. Give me Baja style Mexican food any day over something smothered in melted chemical cheese…Just sayin…
– The Dallas Cowboys… I was raised a Washington Redskins fan and this can be a painful place to live during football season. But I am up for the challenge!
All of that said, this place has definitely grown on me… I am enjoying the fact that I continue to discover and appreciate new things about it and add more and more of the people here to my circle of friends.