Thursday, November 1, 2007

A short trip to Shangri-la.

Last week Steve and I took a flight across the country to California. We went to the golden state to visit Steve's people in San Francisco. The time we spend there was great. It was Steve's birthday so there was a party and "so good to see you's" all day. We visited the city and various places that brought back memories to Steve. We visited people I didn't know, and shopped in Half Moon Bay and walked on the beach.

I noticed it's true what you hear about life there, so laid back. I know that the air is fresh and the weather is beautiful, the plant life plentiful and glorious. There doesn't seem to be any mosquitoes or flies and they leave their doors open without screen doors. No need for screen!

But how could they be so laid back with everything, especially real estate, being so very expensive? Stressful? You'd think. But I didn't really notice that anything except homes were more expensive than here. Target prices looked the same to me. The only time I "had a fit" so my sister-in-law said, was when she tried to convince me that the price of $7.00 for a plain hot dog is normal. I have to tell you I didn't throw a fit but I know that $7.00 is not normal. I checked. This particular hot dog was in a museum restaurant and my so-called fit worked. My sister-in-law bought us a cheeseburger ($9.00) and a hot dog and made us share her Caesar salad. (I am my father's daughter!)

It seems that the corporate world dominates over most everything in the city by the bay. I know that it was the dawning of the computer age that boosted the high prices of real estate. Just driving the interstate will give you a glimpse of the opulence of the big guys, Google, Oracle, etc. And aren't these guys considered young on the silicone highway?
I come from a long line of carpenters, blue collar workers, proud farmers and office assistants.
Steve left California for Oregon right after the rise began. So we really only know what we see and hear. I have to assume that there are many that are under the stress of their corporate jobs. I didn't see it myself. All my sisters have high priority jobs in well known companies but they don't seem to show too much stress. My sister-in-laws Pitt bull is more nervous than she is.

I guess what I am saying is that I think it is true that California is a peaceful, laid back place.

Am I buying into shangri-la? Okay, maybe I was overwhelmed by the beauty and warm hospitality, or because the weather was about 72 degrees the whole time and not a single drop of rain. Or it could be that I had no responsibilities the whole time I was there, yes, the whole "5" days.

Because I dislike travel by air, I was hesitant to go. The ride was what I expected, boring, tight and all day long. This is where we spent most of our money. No, really, the airports.

I never liked take off or landing and now there's the extra security. Of course I must have packed wrong or something, they went through my luggage. I know they probably have to do these things, but it is one more reason that I don't enjoy flying. I thought about this as I was going out that I'd have to think about the long trip back. But I didn't think of it once. I was thinking on my way home, when can we do this again?

I think California and my in-laws worked the magic. I came back ready to move. But reality is back. My girls are here. My home is here. My overloaded back yard and garden are here. How in the world would I get 3 dogs and 5 cats to California?