Tag Archives: social media

Getting to Know San Diego

10 Dec

I’ve now been a San Diego resident for about 2 months (although it still isn’t driver’s license official – add that to the “To Do” list). Two months has been enough to get a feel for the area, find some favorite places to eat, and drive around without getting lost. It has also been enough time to notice differences between here and home – besides the obvious things, like weather and accents – and to recognize things that comprise San Diego’s “personality”. I shall enumerate here, since that was the intended purpose of this blog – documenting the transition from East Coast to West Coast.

For example, there are ZERO Dunkin Donuts in San Diego (or southern California, for that matter). If you are a NY/NJ/PA person, you know that Dunkin Donuts litter the streets, with their small pink and orange storefronts playing mecca to the working schlubs of the East Coast. I have never been a big DD fan – I think their coffee tastes like bitter water and while I love their donuts, my stomach does NOT love me after eating one. However, as soon as I noticed they weren’t out here, I started to miss them. I don’t understand why they haven’t made their way out here yet (although rumor has it that over 100 will open out here in 2014) but I guess Californians prefer burritos and lettuce to donuts and coffee.

One of the first things I tried to do when I moved out here was figure out the major roads. This has proven more difficult than I anticipated. Having spent most of my life in New Jersey, I got used to the basic idea that if I ever needed to get anywhere, the Garden State Parkway or the Turnpike would take me there. San Diego, and I guess California in general, is different. There are approximately 873621990 different highways/freeways here. If you want to get anywhere, you have to take three different major highways to do it. From our apartment alone, we can quickly hop on CA-94, CA-163, I-5, or I-15, and they are all connected in weird, convoluted ways. Also, the direction I am coming from on a particular highway usually denotes which exit I get off of – for example, just because I get off at the B-Street exit on I-5 North does NOT mean I get off on the B street exit from I-5 South. In fact, if I want to get home from I-5 South without making unnecessary detours, I would get off on the CA-94 exit and take that to G street. Obviously, if you don’t live around here, you have no idea what I am talking about, but it is as convoluted as it seems. I purposely drive around sometimes without any GPS assistance so I can get lost and find my way home. It is the only way to really figure all this crap out. I never thought I would miss the Garden State Parkway, but I do. Go figure.

In addition to the strange highway to highway to highway driving pattern here, the drivers themselves are also strange. Maybe it is because I come from a very aggressive driving state, but nobody here honks their horn. Ever. I got beeped at once since I moved here, and the driver had Florida plates. I’ve seen drivers sit and stare at cars in front of them as a light turns from red to green and nobody moves and nobody honks. I broke the horn in my first car from pounding it so much, so the fact that the instinct to punch the horn as soon as a light turns green and the first car in line doesn’t move is not in these drivers is strange to me.

I’ve already mentioned the whole delivery issue in previous posts but I am going to highlight that again here because DAAAAAMMMMITTTTT if I do not miss Chinese delivery. Or the days of cheap delivery. Any place that delivers around here charges stupid delivery fees (i.e., 4.99 + 15% of your bill). I’m starting to think it is because most of these delivery people have to take three highways to get anywhere, so I guess it makes sense, but still.

There are also a lot of really great things out here, I know I sound like I am hating on it, but I’m not. I think it is part of the acclimation process to immediately notice the stuff that is weird or different. I’m actually starting to really like the area, especially the particular neighborhood that we live in. We live in the Golden Hill section of San Diego, which is just south of South Park, and the whole area is very cute. When I was researching apartments and neighborhoods before I moved out here, I consistently heard that the Golden Hill/South Park/North Park sections of San Diego were the “Brooklyns of San Diego” so I figured they would be the most suited to my general preferences and lifestyle. And, like most times in life, I was correct. I’ve gotten Sam (the guy) to do lots of walking around this area, and there are ton of really cute stores and restaurants and there are always little events going on. The more I explore the area, the more I really like it.

Also, San Diego weather wins. I miss the heat, but everyday here is like perpetual Spring, and that is kind of nice. I still haven’t learned how to properly layer for the weather, since it is warm during the day but chillier at night, but I am trying.

Nothing new on the job front. Still trying to pursue that whole advertising/marketing thing, but all of these employers want portfolios. Anybody know how to make a portfolio? I know there are schools that you can go to where you essentially spend a year building a portfolio, but I don’t have an extra $40,000 lying around to do that. I wish I saved the crap I did in college – everybody mocks hoarder types but I wish I hoarded all the WONDERFUL garbage I had to do for my copywriting and graphic design classes. Sigh.

On that note, I shall end things with a pic of the cats. Because they are the cutest. And the apartment still has a LOOOOOOONG way to go. Unpacking and arranging has been stalled momentarily by funding issues. It drives me crazy that there are still unpacked boxes and a TV on the floor, but it is what it is. Job me San Diego. Seriously.

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