In February 2007, with 3 dogs and a day-old marriage, I anxiously headed to the Bay Area.
I have lived in Toledo, Ohio, or a burb of, all of my life.
My employer at the time transferred me and the transition, like most, was not without its challenges.
After much sticker-shock, Jonathan and I found a rental house and settled in. We made it our home. The Bay Area commutes were bad but thankfully, my hours and locale were flexible.
Years later, through an amicable divorce, a promotion, a career change, the death of my beloved Callie, innumerable hair experiments, weight losses, knee surgery, and weight gain…along with too many incredible memories to count, this chapter is now coming to an end.
Tonight is my last night in this house that was once a home.
As expected, my feelings are conflicted.
I will miss the quiet, the backyard for the pups, the star-filled nights. The Midwestern part of me with miss the space.
The West Coast part of me though? It’s so ready for the next adventure.
No more 20 hours a week commutes. No more wasting an hour to get anywhere. No more burbs. No more driving everywhere. No more hoping to have people over for dinner parties or missing spur of the moment invites to events.
Now life can really begin in a way that correlates with the person that I am. I can engage with the world in a more meaningful way. I can walk to stores and cafes, taquerias and brew pubs. I can take public transit to work. I can bond with my new colleagues in a way that my commute never allowed.
I’ve never been one to shy from change and I am not about to start now. Especially not now when I am at the precipice of having the life that I’ve wanted for so long.
I have unease. Will the pups adjust? What will city sounds be like? Will my new roommate and I not only peacefully co-exist but will we develop a deep friendship and provide a support system for one another? Will frequent exposure to hipsters have a negative impact on my soul?
But honestly, truthfully, and without hesitation: I am so freaking ready to find out.
Stripping away the layers of possessions and feeling the emotional weight lift, I am now moving toward a new future.
So Goodbye, Mountain House.
And Hello, Berkeley!