Sunday, March 28, 2004

California, My new crush

When I was growing up, I always figured that I would move the hell out of the Midwest as soon as the opportunity afforded itself, so basically as soon as I reached college age. The big plan was to move out to the sophisticated, intellectual, cultured East coast where, in contrast to Chicagoland, hills, gorgeous old buildings, and an interesting history are the norm.

As I sit here typing this, I find myself at Northwestern University, which is not only in the Midwest but just one town south of the town that I grew up in. I do like Northwestern a lot, and I don't really regret not living out East: too stressful, not as friendly, East coast schools can be awfully snobby. Still, until a week ago, moving out to the East after college was my main focus. If not Boston or New York, most certainly Washington D.C., but now I have a new love, and its name is California.

Granted I visited one region of the huge state for one week, but I just love it. Beautiful hills, lush vegetation, the ocean, cacti, and generally more relaxed people. Also, the weather is naturally a draw, though we had relatively chilly and cloudy weather when I visited last week (in the 60s, so that's nothing compared to what I'm used to). I think my appreciation for this sort of living corresponds in part to my increased appreciation for living a relaxed life. Back when I was enamored with the East, I was much more accustomed to a life of intellectual rigor, but I now see that there are other things more important than this way of living, for example, new and fun experiences, friends and family, and an easy going approach to life.

Anyway, California was great fun, and I love it in spite of Ah-nold. In fact, in part because of Arnold, simply because he is soo California.

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