Things You Realize When You Move Back Home
For the last 5-ish years I have been living all over the place; college, NYC, London, Philadelphia, a small town in the mountains of Pennsylvania. I haven't been spending long periods of time at home - a week here or there for holidays or quick weekend visits home. I recently moved home for the last month of time before Brooke and I leave for our trip. I was at work the other day getting ready to leave for lunch. I was daydreaming about the delicious salad I was going to get and then it hit me - where the f**k do I get a delicious salad in Manahawkin, New Jersey? It got me thinking about all the things you realize when you move back to your small hometown from college/the city/wherever you may have been living.
1. There is no good food:
Not being able to find a good salad at lunch time is only the tip of the iceberg. My hometown, and many like it I assume, is desperately lacking any variety of good food. I miss the days of getting a chicken pesto sandwich from Green Cafe in NYC or lemon herb soup from Grocery in Philly. Even your favorite childhood pizza place is looking underwhelming after months of authentic wood fired Margherita pizzas.
2. All your friends are gone:
It's been 4+ years since you've graduated high school and most of your friends have managed to escape your hometown by now. Realizing you are one of the only ones still stuck living with your parents is like adding insult to injury. Big weekend plans include going to the movies with your grandma (Hi, Grandma!).
3. It's inconvenient to have to drive everywhere:
Things were so much easier when you lived within walking distance of a food store, your friends, and your favorite bar. You definitely did not appreciate this enough while it lasted. Now I have to drive to the stores and bars and all my friends live 2+ hours away.
4. The dating pool is so small:
In addition to not having any friends, it's really hard to go out and meet when the average age of the regulars at the local bars is 55. Hopefully you found that special someone before you moved back home because chances of finding them in your hometown are very slim.
5. High school actually wasn't the 'best time of your life':
Running into old acquaintances from high school and realizing you just don't have the energy to pretend to care about their lives. Or worse, running into old teachers. So-and-so got pregnant, so-and-so got married - and divorced, and that goody-two-shoes who sat in the corner silently judging everyone at high school parties is now a raging alcoholic. All home towns have the same empty gossip. Having spent some time away from your hometown will make you realize just how much more there is to the world.
But, despite being totally bored, it's nice to know I can always come back to the place I called home for the first 18 years of my life. Go out, explore the world, try better food, meet people with different experiences, but never forget the place you came from that made you who you are.