I "heart" Bakersfield!!! (Los Angeles, Long Beach: sales, how much, house)
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Tim, I really appreciate your response. My husband and I will be visiting soon if things go as planned. I know it won't be like Long Beach and I am so bummed because honestly, I love Long Beach. I love the ocean and I love driving around and seeing things, I love shopping. But at the same time, how often do I really go out? Plus, SoCal can be way too materialistic, and I actually think it would be refreshing to get away from that influence. It's not what life is about.
My son is almost five and my daughter is almost two and we are all sleeping in a one bedroom apartment. We are at a new point in our lives. We simply need a bigger place, a safer neighborhood. Right now my life is walking my kids to the park, getting Rubio's and frozen yoghurt, hanging at the beach, but that will all be changing once they are school aged. I would miss the ocean and the nightlife but at the same time I would love, love, love to have my own room back, a play room for the kids, a garage, a washer and dryer - you know, the stuff that actually affects everyday life. I would love to go to bed without sirens. (When I visit my parents in their little Washington State farm town, population 30,000, I say I am bored, but secretly I dream of raising my kids someplace like that. I slow down, I stop concentrating on my hair or my clothes, I dress comfortably, I take the kids out for walks. You know what else - I sleep hella good.) My husband has been talking about kayaking a lot lately so he would have the opportunity to pursue that just fine in Kern River!! I think there will be a plus side to Bakersfield, but all changes require adapting, and maybe I will just have to take a deep breath and go at it a day at a time. In fact, six years ago I moved to California FROM ALASKA...talk about culture shock!! The first week here I had to get on the ground because of gun fire. I heard a woman get beat in the building across the way. I've witnessed two car crashes due to drinking and driving. The tenant upstairs from me came home one night to find a stranger in his apartment that was high on drugs and schizophrenic and was beaten badly. It was the most awful thing I have ever heard. I couldn't sleep for a month unless I drank. Even now, I toss and turn at night and listen to all the noises outside. I haven't slept a good night in years. So even though city life gives you that high sometimes, it just might be worth it to consider opening a new chapter in our lives for the sake of safety and "family life". Besides, I will only be 2 hours away. I could always drive down for the weekend or day and visit the beaches.
I just want to make sure that my children won't be the subject of racism and hatred, but it sounds like that won't be much of an issue. I spoke with a friend tonight who visited Bakersfield a few times. He is Sri Lankan. He said he noticed all races and felt fine there, saw nothing out of the ordinary.
I know I am giving more info than necessary, but I just really have been stressing about moving and need to vent. It's not the same moving with kids, more at stake. My hubby and I came to Cali with no money or jobs, just our car and clothes in the trunk. Can't do that anymore!!!!
Thanks for your input. And thanks for letting me vent (to who reads this). Sorry its so long! (LIndyscribe, can you relate to any of this?)
I know just how you feel. We moved to Bakersfield from Santa Monica almost 2 years ago, and I cried and was sooo bummed. My hubby got a great job and I was pregnant with our son, and we wanted to buy a home. Unless you are a movie star, you won't be able to afford a home in Santa Monica, as wonderful as it is. So, we make our journey north, and found a nice affordable home in an affordable neighborhood. The schools are great, the people are friendly and willing to help, wide streets, and clean nice neighborhoods. I think if a family is looking for a place in California that is centrally located, good schools, affordable nice homes and neighborhoods, they are crazy not to consider Bakersfield. My mom wants to move out here to be closer to her grandkids, and there are waiting lists for apartments here! That is something!
Lindyscribe, I am really glad you posted this. I've been reading so many hateful things about Bakersfield, but to know that another mom from a southern cali metro area has had a good experience...well, it's reassuring. I just have that nervous feeling in my stomach about this "new chapter" of our lives. I think that in the end it just matters what you make of it. You find what you look for. Here's an experience: My parents moved to this tiny farming town and I have only seen three black people there - my father being one of them. I always ask my dad if he notices any "racism" or if he feels weird but he is head over heels for the place. He has made so many friends and swears that its the friendliest place on earth. The thing is my father is an optimist. He always remains positive and sees the cup as half full. He never pities himself. Because of that attitude he retired as the highest paid employee in his department. And get this: he was the only black man in his department AND the only employee without a college education. On top of that, he has a speech impediment. He beat the odds, he worked his butt off, he seeked knowledge and he always smiled. And for that he's a lovable person and a successful person.
There is no perfect place...just perfect attitudes.
Having said that I think I am going to proceed happily. I will fondly remember the experiences I have had here in Long Beach and plan on visiting occassionally but for now I will have fun picking out my new home and enjoy the nights of peaceful sleep that are coming my way.
I grew up in the San Joaquin Valley, lived there for 23 years and have since lived in Oregon for 30. I want to move back to The Valley. I've never considered Bakersfield but, y'know, that is a thought. I'll look into it.
To me, the San Joaquin has the best weather. Sure, it's summers are way too hot for a lot of people, but it has the great spring and falls anywhere. I miss that, even after all this time.
Stelinzoe--your description of your father is inspirational--I'm going to copy it to show my kids as a lesson in how to have a fulfilling life.
As for places that get a lot of flack--my sister and her family just bought a gorgeous, huge house in Fresno for a very reasonable price in an area that looks like a park. For people who have nothing but criticism for places like Fresno and Bakersfield--you need to adjust your thinking a bit. And maybe take another look.
Lindyscribe, that is exactly what attracted me to your thread...your enthusiasm and positivity. I am always being made fun of for being so "bright eyed and bushy tailed". My husband calls me one of those "weird happy people". So when I saw your thread I couldn't help but be attracted to your ..."energy"? Actually I think I laughed and though "she sounds like me!" Plus, I had just heard so many awful things about Bakersfield and was sick of the negativity. At one point I gave up the thought of moving there, thinking it was a little, racist, country town stuck in a dump of a hot valley and overcome by hoodlums shooting up the place and lines of sick people with valley fever. My husband even noticed my lack of excitement and said, "Hey, don't worry, I am sure its not that bad." Then the next day I found your thread (as well as tons of info on the web about great places in Bakersfield and tons of things to do and beautiful pictures) and now I am convinced its a great place to be for our family...just a bit hot. We are driving down Labor Day weekend (I checked the weather, 101, what a weekend to first see it) and my husband told my son we are moving to Bakersfield, so now our plan is in action. If we like what we see this all will really happen soon. I am excited.
As for the compliments regarding my father....THANK YOU. I have yet to commend him for it, but plan on doing so shortly. It's funny what you begin to notice about your parents when you become an adult yourself. Just months ago we were having a conversation and I began to speak about negative things and my father stopped me and said he was being affected by my negativity and could we please change the subject. I was embarrassed a little but it was a lesson learned. Then I thought about it and realized that I can't even remember him saying anything negative all the years of my childhood. And guess what: He seems to be the person that gets all the things that he wants and is always happy where he's at.
Yep, good lesson. Glad you all enjoyed it.
Thank you, Stelinzoe. I am one of those "weird happy people", too. LOL! Yeah, I am sick off all the Bakersfield bashing. I honestly don't see where it comes from. OK, so it's not as glamorous as Malibu, but we don't have the traffic and snobs that Malibu does. I came here expecting to be shot at by Bubba in his pick-up truck everyday, lol. When we go shopping in the grocery store, everybody smiles and tells us hello. My hubby was almost moved to tears by that. As I have stated before, there are houses here that can give Beverly Hills a run for its money anyday, and I would bet my life the neighbors are much nicer! Somebody needed to be the Bakersfield Cheerleader! I do believe in being positive about it, though. As far as "Valley Fever" goes, my 5 year old daughter had asthma attacks when we lived in Santa Monica. When we moved here, they just went away. I have heard about other people with similar situations, too. So, don't listen to all the bashing of Bakersfield, Stelinzoe! I bet those people have not been here in a loooong time!
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