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Old 03-26-2007, 07:02 PM
 
99 posts, read 278,662 times
Reputation: 24

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Hey: My wife and I am looking to relocate somewhere in the state of Delaware or the immediate Md area right over the border...School district, and good hospitals are inportant to us...Iv been seeing a lot of negative posts about crime and bad schools. would love to hear from Delaware residents about how true they are...We have been visiting the state for about 10 years or so every chance we get and have spent time in New Castle, Newark,Symrnia, Dover and the Rebolt beach area and it all seemed quiet (not too quiet) and overall really clean plus the people seemed nice....THE QUESTION: ARE WE MISSING SOMETHINGE NEED TO KNOW? Input very much appreciated, and thank yu in advance.
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Old 03-26-2007, 07:29 PM
 
25 posts, read 127,880 times
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Hi! I've been straightforward in my comments about Delaware and, if you've been reading, you've seen my negative posts. I'm being as honest as I can be about my feelings, my husband's, and my children's, and we've lived here more than 20 years. (Feeling very trapped, but about to escape!) Our children are in colleges elsewhere now. I'm sure this state is a good fit for some people, and I'm glad for them. The housing situation, at least in Kent and Sussex counties, is good. (The shore areas are more expensive.) If that's mainly what you care about, you'll find a pleasant house, I'm sure. You're hearing this from a long time Delaware resident. My posts on all the things you've mentioned--except, perhaps crime--are easy to find. Good luck to you.
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Old 03-26-2007, 07:52 PM
 
99 posts, read 278,662 times
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Hey I have see your posts, and honesty is exactly what we are looking for, so thank you!! Im glad to hear that at least most of the neighborhoods are decent. As far as "the things to do part " I think if you put your mind to it you can find things to entertain yourselves even in the most rural communities..alas the one major selling point is gonna be the schools, which i guess Im gonna have to do more research as well a side by side comparisons...again THANK YOU!!!!!
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Old 03-27-2007, 06:59 AM
 
5 posts, read 14,841 times
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Hi Northeastcouple . . . I have to totally agree with Roxanna. We live in "West Dover", a nice area which is sort of near Dover Downs and Dover Mall. We moved here from NJ almost six years ago because we were about to have two kids in college at the same time, and could not afford NJ real estate taxes and college for two. It has not been a pleasant stay here. The people are just not friendly. I don't know why, but if you are an outsider, you will never be welcomed. It is heartbreaking to try everything you can to make friends, and find that you just will not be able to. Sure, the housing is cheap and the taxes are low, but there is a tradeoff.

As Roxanna said, if you are looking for decent medical care, look elsewhere. The doctors in this area are out of date and just awful. Case in point, I have a chronic medical condition that necessitates twice yearly visits to a gastroenterologist and once a year out-patient hospital testing. (I am on medication and stabilized). My original specialist was up in Wilmington, and he was excellent, but I just got sick of the drive so I found a doctor here in Dover. When I went to him, he told me to go off my medication, and consider having gastro surgery now, since the condition would most likely turn cancerous in seven years anyway. Absolutely outrageous!!!! I couldn't believe what I was hearing, so went back to my original doctor in Wilmington, who told me that the information the Dover doctor gave me was 20 years out of date, staying on medication could keep me surgery free forever, there is no reason to even consider surgery, the medications now being used are excellent, and that he thought I should consider reporting that doctor to the medical board. Just an example of a Dover doctor. For hospital care, don't even consider Dover General, you have to go up north.

As far as schools, I was a long term substitute teacher in the Capital School District. I would never, ever send my children to Dover High School (thankfully they are past that). Although I think many of the teachers there are competent and caring, it is a school district that is out of control, with an inept and incompetent administration, too many children in each classroom, and more time spent on discipline than on learning. I did not have any experience with the lower grade schools here, so I won't comment on that.

I used to think that I would be able to find things do to and fit in no matter where I lived, and I have lived both in Europe and in many parts of the United States. This area has such a lack of things to do it is pathetic. True, the beaches are lovely, but wait until you try to drive down to Rehoboth Beach on a summer's day. Count on a three hour drive (and then good luck trying to find parking). If you are looking for culture, the Biggs Museum is good for a visit or two (takes about an hour) and that is about it. Downtown Dover is dead and scary. Sure, the quaint buildings are nice, but they are empty, and as Roxanna said, you will drive past them thousands of times with no reason to stop. Dover Mall is like the malls were in NJ twenty years ago, one story, with 4 or 5 anchor stores, and don't plan on going there after 3:30 when the high school crowd comes in. The library in Dover, for such a large town, is very, very small. The restaurants here are mediocre, to say the least, unless you are a fan of Bob Evans or other such chains.

I don't mean to offend anyone that will read this, but this is my personal opinion. I can't put my finger on what exactly it is that is so wrong about this place, except that perhaps this area (Dover) is still basically a "hick little town" that has built a few nice housing developments, but nothing else. If you like Nascar, hunting, shopping at Wal-Mart, you will be fine. If you are used to more, you will absolutely hate it!! Try and join any group that you might be interested in, you will find it is by invitation only.

I do think that it is totally different in northern Delaware. There are a lot more things to do, the restaurants and cultural possibilities are certainly a lot better, I don't know about the schools. But here you are dealing with "small town mentality" in every way.

You said: "As far as "the things to do part " I think if you put your mind to it you can find things to entertain yourselves even in the most rural communities . . ." That is simply not true here. You will find nothing to do to entertain yourself. It gets real old after a while.

We are really in a bind. We love our house, we have almost 3 acres of land, and have put a lot of love and energy into making our property beautiful. But our children hate coming here, our friends and families hate coming here, and after a while you get very sick of trying to entertain yourselves while waiting for something positive to happen. It just won't here.

It's sad, we came here with such high expectations, such a laid back place, surely in such a small town everyone would be friendly. We have found it to be the exact opposite. I wish you well in your search.
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Old 03-27-2007, 07:34 AM
 
1,646 posts, read 4,461,880 times
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I think Roxanna, MiouMiou, and I should do lunch. LOL!
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Old 03-27-2007, 07:58 AM
 
1,646 posts, read 4,461,880 times
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Northeastcouple - One thing I've found to be lacking is customer service and simple respect. That seems to transend into the medical community as well.

Every day life brings glitches. That happens everywhere. What I don't see here is personal accountablity and a desire to be part of the solution.

What can be a simple issue turns into a major PITA. Perhaps it's the local schools. I don't know. No one seems to be willing to problem solve or think.

Maybe it's the hold DuPont had on the state for so many years. A society of robots was created. The company and politicians were so closely connected that the citizens were owned by them. They are told to march....and they march!!!

The politics? Oh, my. It's a small state. Everybody knows everybody...and they are usually related. We seem to have a monarchy here. ie...Joe and Beau Biden.

The Dept. of Education appears to have some very odd thinking. There are charter schools and private schools all over the state. Many people won't send their children to DE public schools.

I wish I could give you facts and figures. I can't. I do know that when I read what Roxanna and MiouMiou post, I feel less crazy. At least I feel less alone.
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Old 03-27-2007, 08:48 AM
 
25 posts, read 127,880 times
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rockky and MiouMiou, where were you when I needed you??!! Now that we're poised to move, I find you!

Is that one of the problems, do you think? Nowhere that I can think of to find kindred spirits. If we had, for instance, a Barnes and Noble or a Borders here, we could plunk ourselves down in comfy chairs and look for likely friends! But no. I've never even found a book club! If we had a Whole Foods or a Trader Joe's, we could watch to see who's buying something just a little exotic. If......well, I can think of other possibilities, but unfortunately.....

I can't explain the lack of just about everything other than affordable housing here. MiouMiou, you come close when you say that it's remained a "hick little town", even as the population grows. Perhaps that will ultimately change. I hope so, but we're not going to wait for this to happen.

As always, I do not wish to offend anyone. This has been our family's experience in Dover.
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Old 03-27-2007, 09:26 AM
 
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Roxanna:

I think, although many people would not understand, that you have hit the nail on the head, and I don't even think I realized it before. This is the first place I have ever lived that did not have a bookstore (well, other than the Atlantic Book Outlet on 13, but that does not count). What does that tell you about a place? What kind of people can live in a place where they cannot buy books. Oh, excuse me, Wal-Mart does have a row of the latest trash. I am an inveterate reader, I always lived nearby a Barnes & Noble or a Borders bookstore (or even when living in Holland, was always at The American Book Store in Amsterdam). There is nothing more wonderful than being able to spend hours browsing in a bookstore, if you are a big reader, you know, opening the books and taking in that "smell" of the print. Education does not stop with graduation, its a lifelong process, and watching hours of television or getting your info off the internet is not the same as settling down with a good book. I had mentioned in another post that I had never met so many people here proud to admit they have not read a book since they were "forced" to in high school.

Regarding food shopping, I know just what you mean. We go up to Trader Joe's whenever we are able, right across the way outside the mall there is also a nice "International" store (like a Pier One but better) when you just don't want another K/Wal-Mart item for your home. We frequently drive to either NJ or PA to go to Wegmans. There is a huge and wonderful whole foods market on Route 73 in Marlton NJ that I also end up driving to.

Everything you say is true. There are no book clubs. I love to garden, have a huge property, and have tried joining the few gardening clubs here. As I had mentioned, they are by invitation only, never heard of that before, and when I had asked one woman if she would "sponsor" me, she said no. Just another example of yet another friendly local.

You are so lucky, Roxanna if you are poised to move. Have you sold your home? Where are you thinking about going? We have thought about Florida because I love the warm weather, but my daughter just became engaged and is getting married next year, and now my son has a very serious girlfriend and I think they will get married too. Both live in NJ and would never leave there. It would be just terrible to be so far away when grandkids are a distinct possibility in the near future.

I know that Rockky and I had discussed in another post the problems here with age discrimination regarding employment. I have not been able to find employment since my experiences with the Capital School District, and I refuse to become a Wal-Mart greeter.

It just seems to me that although Dover is trying to build itself up with regards to the large homes being built here, there is nothing being built up with it. Have you ever tried to buy furniture from one of the nicer stores up north? They won't even deliver to Dover!!! Seriously, we tried it.

I would certainly be interested if you were interested in starting up a book club (if you have not already sold your home, because then it would just be too sad to meet someone interesting and then have them move away). Of course, that would necessitate a trip "up north" to get the books, since they surely won't be found here.
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Old 03-27-2007, 10:11 AM
 
1,646 posts, read 4,461,880 times
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MiouMiou, Roxanna...if you enjoy spending hours in old book stores, check out The Book Barn just south of West Chester, PA. Lots of relaxing fun there.

Shortly after I moved here, I ran over to the shopping plaza where Metro/AC Moore/Happy Harry's/and the new Kohl's store is now. It was early evening...just starting to get dark. I didn't think a thing about it. I had no reason to fear going anywhere.

As I was checking out of the store, a man behind me tried to strike up a conversation. I didn't think much about that either. I'm not the sort that attracts attention. Then his statements started to go over the line. I ignored him. My car was just outside the door in the parking lot, so I figured I'd scoot to the car and be out of there before he left the store. Nope. He followed me from the store and continued the weird conversation....placing himself between me and the car door. He was obviously drinking (which may account for the attention directed at me ). I continued to get into the car trying not to antagonize him. I just wanted to leave and hope that I wouldn't be followed. My method seemed to work, but I think it left a lasting impression on me.

I don't like to go anywhere alone here after dark. Maybe I've created my own "cage". I'm sure this is not an unusual situation in many places. There's jerks everywhere. Somehow, I've not been able to get beyond the feelings I had in those few minutes.

One good stop. If you are looking for the most beautiful plants you've ever seen, make a trip to Harvey Yoder's. The greenhouses are down a dirt lane behind Byler's store.
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Old 03-27-2007, 05:37 PM
 
99 posts, read 278,662 times
Reputation: 24
HEY EVERYONE:THANK YOU AGAIN FOR YOUR ADVICE!!! We definatly have to do a double take and a lot more research in Dover maybe look more north as well....Its great to speak with folks like you that have lived there for a while and been in similar situations on relocating ...Its puzzling because when you see something from the outside looking in , the grass is always a little greener,so jumping in is so tempting... Dover is real pretty( and clean) compared to lot of comparible size towns/cities. By the way sorry to hear about all of your unpleasant experiences and thanks fo sharing them with us (Miou the best of health to you) . also I think Im gonna start taking advantage of the "Barnes and Nobles" which is 10 blocks away, while i have the chance!!!!!! One more thing you three really should get together you seem like a bunch of nice people within the same age bracket with a lot in common....
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