Lately I've been talking with friends about people who suddenly announce they're up and moving. I've always been slightly suspicious of it, perhaps because I did this once upon a time in an almost overnight move to San Francisco. I immediately identify this (project it?) as escapism, whether or not it is.
So what does it mean when today, on an absolutely gorgeous day in San Diego, I'm the one with the overwhelming urge to be anywhere else? Last weekend I was up in LA, both for work and pleasure, and the time flew. Before I knew it I had been there for 3 full days and nights, had been all over town, had seen so many people and done so much. I just felt busy and happy. As I drove home, I was excited to return to my routine and the relaxed life I have created, but then I realized how quiet my life here is. I was in LA for my 10 year reunion and I think the idea of having been in San Diego for a decade now struck me. I've never lived anywhere this long (except my childhood home); was it deliberate or just by chance?
Sometimes I wonder if I got to San Diego too early. It's an incredible city and absolutely the one I want to spend my later years in. But was showing up here in my 20s right for me? Do I want to be here forever, nonstop? Am I never going to live in a huge metropolitan city again? I guess if you think about anything like that it's overwhelming.
My 10 year personal retrospective is further pressed by the fact that it seems like more and more people are moving away, something I have a hard time with for a number of reasons (see why I hate goodbyes), and meanwhile, others get married and develop universes of their own, which in some ways is a moving-on. My mom always told me to hurry up and get married because "Your friends are all around you and going out all the time so you don't notice right now - but they won't always be around" and I thought she had it all wrong. Unfathomable! But as I spent a quiet afternoon at a cafe with my thoughts today, I wonder if maybe she's right. Now, I don't think marriage is a solution to very much in this life, it's more of a parallel adventure, but I guess when someone is annoying you and not doing his laundry or fighting over bills, at least you're occupied. It's never been my style to be in a relationship just to be in one, so unfortunately that strategy won't work, but I'm surprised at how right she was that no matter how close you are with people, they are going to spin off into their own lives eventually. Nothing can be forever.
Despite my vague threats, I don't think I'll get up and move anywhere, at least not without a bigger reason, because after my SF experience I realized that ultimately your boredom, thoughts, feelings - they all go with you. A place can only entertain you for so long; your reality is right there in the suitcase or moving boxes with you. You can't move because you think there will be more people to entertain you - you have to be the entertaining one, or, as my mom says "Only boring people get bored." I shudder to think of becoming boring.
My brother always says [apparently my family gives a lot of advice] to pick a city you'd like even if you didn't know anyone there, and I think that's why San Diego has been home to me for so long - it's that city for me. It's a city that I love more and more with each passing year, with every hike I take or new restaurant I discover. But I guess I've been so busy setting up my new company and being involved in 1001 other things that when I stopped for a moment to just relax, I wished there were more people around to do that with, who get it.
In other news, when this happens I usually just take on another crazy endeavor to entertain myself, and the feeling passes. Might be time to revisit the bucket list.