Hi Friends! I hope you’ve been enjoying all of my Europe posts. I wanted to take a break from those for a day or two to change the subject for a bit. (Don’t worry, I still have posts coming about Krakow, Warsaw, Salzburg and Munich, hope you’re excited!)
Let’s talk for a second about living life 3,000 miles away from home. This is a very fragile subject for me and I don’t know if I’ll ever fully be at peace with it. But I’m learning how to find a balance and thus maintain a happy status quo.
I grew up in a suburb of Boston with a large family and a pretty big circle of friends. In my house, you could expect the phone to ring once every half hour, and the doorbell to ring a few times a day. There were always people dropping in to say hi, coming over for dinner or to chat with a drink on the porch. Neighbors stop by to gossip, or to exchange desserts and someone was always watching out for you.
Cousins at Christmas!!
With a large family back in Boston, there’s always a BBQ to attend, or a cousin’s soccer game to watch. There are birthdays, anniversaries, graduations and movie nights. I left all of that behind to pursue my dreams in Los Angeles. It’s hard knowing how good you have it, and then to consciously decide to leave it all behind. Moving to LA will forever be the decision that defines me. In 50 years I will look back and tell my grandchildren about how Irving and I rented a minivan and drove off to California.
Now fast forward to life in LA. With the time change, my phone rings just a few times a week, and most phone calls have been replaced with text messages or emails. And I don’t think my doorbell has randomly rang at all this year (sometimes the FedEx guy rings my bell, but that doesn’t really count). Life is different in LA. People don’t just ‘drop by’. Visits are preempted with text messages (not that I don’t appreciate these, it’s just not the same).
Neighbors don’t look out for you here by default. I don’t even know who most of my neighbors are. I see people hit the ‘elevator close’ button often so they can avoid the chit-chat. It’s easy to feel lonely in LA.
Everyone says that it gets easier to make friends when you have kids. I suppose that is true, but what can the rest of us do in the meantime? I have a running group, a scrapbook group, an LA Bloggers group and a handful of local high school and college friends (all of whom I am eternally grateful for). Maybe all adults feel this way no matter where they live. Maybe it’s just what happens when everyone is in their 20s and people get busy with their own lives.
Halloween Horror Nights Last Year!
It doesn’t help that Irving and I are both characteristically introverts. We love our quiet time at home, and we love to travel together. But sometimes all I want is to enjoy a mug of hot tea with some girl friends and talk about books, movies and life. (Anyone free this weekend?) I feel like I haven’t put my roots down yet. I am digging though, I’m sure they will sprout soon.
Any suggestions on making friends in a new city? Tell me I’m not alone here!