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Old 11-10-2016, 09:23 AM
 
2 posts, read 1,457 times
Reputation: 10

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Greetings!

I am flying to the Greenville area this coming weekend to look around town, as my SO has a good job offer in the city and we are deciding if we want to relocate to the area from where we currently live (South Florida). We are both in our late 30s and have no children, just dogs.

I have lived in South Florida for the majority of my life, but I have also lived in the Midwest for a number of years, too (OH & WI). I am politically liberal-ish (at least in the social sense) and an atheist, so living in this area has admittedly caused me a bit of hand-wringing. I know I will be fine, especially if I can find some like-minded people; I get along with most people, so it's not like I can't be around other people with different points of view--but there are limits. Pros for me are that the area is great for outdoor activities that my SO and I enjoy that are not that great where we currently live (hiking, backpacking, mountain biking), being closer to one of my mother who lives in NE TN ( the rest of my family is in S. FL), and possibly a greater quality of life. I have been in the Blue Ridge area annually for a few years, so I have a general sense of what that region of the US is like. It's a beautiful area and the idea of being so close to it is very attractive.

My SO already visited for a weekend a couple of weeks ago and thinks I will like the area, especially the downtown area. He is from the Boston area, but has lived in other parts of the country as well (Miami, LA, NY).

We are unsure of whether or not we will buy in the area--we may have to rent for awhile first to figure out what areas we like. We also have to figure out what to do with our house here, which we just bought in May and is exactly what we wanted. I am dreading this a bit, as we also have 2 dogs and I imagine it will be hard to find someone who will rent to us. We have no kids, so schools aren't a concern for now.

Do you have any suggestions as to areas/towns we should investigate while we are in town? We currently live on a property with 2+ acres and would eventually like to buy something similar with as much or more land. MY SO likes tranquility. We both are not into gated-community style living. Areas on my list so far (for buying): Travelers Rest, Greer, and Taylors. For renting, I will probably be less discriminatory, and am considering Simpsonville or more "cookie-cutter" housing/communities since it may be short-term.

I would also like to find a great guitar instructor (who can teach bluegrass would be great), so if you know anyone/have any recommendations, I would be most appreciative! I have already done some searching online, so I have a general idea of where to go. However, personal recommendations are always useful.

Thanks for your time!
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Old 11-10-2016, 10:09 AM
 
370 posts, read 315,365 times
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We only shoot every 3rd newcomer, so timing your arrival can be important.... (evil grin)

I'm always struck by the concerns about religious bias in our area. We don't really care if you're a religious believer or not. As long as you don't make it an issue, it's not going to be a factor. Sure... someone will very likely invite you to attend church with them, but it's just a sign you are on your way to being accepted. Don't let it make you feel awkward... its a painless positive thing. A polite refusal is all it takes for the matter to be settled once and for all. It's something akin to being invited for a beer in some other places. Coming here with the idea of curing "the ignorant locals from the evils of their faith" isn't going to end well. We're pretty much a live and let live community. As long as you mind yours and you let everyone else mind their own, you'll be fine.

Expect there to be a bit of culture shock, at first, but know that a strong sense of humor and an open friendly approach to things will serve you well. I lived in Mendocino County CA for a while and experienced similar cultural adjustments from the other direction. If you do manage a couple of years, living here, chances are we won't ever be able to chase you away. Number one mistake that newcomers make is thinking that we even remotely want them to make it more like where they came from. We don't want to have the same reasons for leaving that brought you here.

Renting at first is a good idea. A bit of exploration and some easy conversations with locals will keep you out of places where you might not want to live. SC is not a place for everyone, but it seems to be an easy fit for most who give it a chance. The slower pace of living, you'll find here, has many unexpected pluses.
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Old 11-10-2016, 12:42 PM
 
2 posts, read 1,457 times
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Cedge1,

Well, we already dodge bullets on the regular down here in S. Florida, so my dodging skills are well developed!

Truth be told, I don't like it here much, but that's for geographical reasons more so than political/social ones, so no worries about me trying to change stuff. It's hot and humid here in the summer and there's not much outdoor stuff to do unless you like water sports. I enjoy sea kayaking quite a bit and you really have to go to the west coast in order to do that since the Atlantic is not amenable to it (no barrier islands/mangroves and lots of power boats, jet skis).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cedge1 View Post
I'm always struck by the concerns about religious bias in our area.
Although I have not been to SC (other than having driven through it), I imagine it's very much the same as parts of NE TN and NW N. Carolina. My mother, who lives in NE TN, is now very religious and is very involved in church and ministry, so I've experienced that environment. Religion is also very much on public display this region and this is really obvious when you live somewhere where it is not as public. It's expressed in people's everyday language and there are churches on almost every street corner...almost like Milwaukee's bar on every street corner! I do find people to be friendly and polite for the most part, but it's certainly not very diverse.

Would you say the Greenville area is more Appalachian or Southern in nature?

I am looking forward to the visit, though, but not looking forward to the cold nights!

Thanks for taking the time to respond!
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Old 11-10-2016, 12:56 PM
 
1,396 posts, read 1,335,984 times
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If you don't have kids and schools to worry about, I'd certainly suggest renting first to get a better feel for the area.

For what you describe, I'd suggest looking at Travelers Rest and the areas around Furman University. It's a pretty area and close to the outdoor activities that you are interested in while still being a reasonable commute back into Greenville. You can also find houses with land like you are looking for in that area.

You can bring your kayak and use it on the lakes in the area. Lake Jocassee is particularly pretty. There are almost limitless opportunities for hiking, backpacking and mountain biking. I responded in a bit more detail in another post in the forum today so I won't rehash it again.

I'd say that Greenville is more Southern but there is definitely a bit of Appalachian influence.
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Old 11-10-2016, 01:34 PM
 
Location: Taylors, SC and Asheville, NC
10,701 posts, read 23,220,086 times
Reputation: 3661
Quote:
Originally Posted by sumognat View Post
Greetings!

I am flying to the Greenville area this coming weekend to look around town, as my SO has a good job offer in the city and we are deciding if we want to relocate to the area from where we currently live (South Florida). We are both in our late 30s and have no children, just dogs.

I have lived in South Florida for the majority of my life, but I have also lived in the Midwest for a number of years, too (OH & WI). I am politically liberal-ish (at least in the social sense) and an atheist, so living in this area has admittedly caused me a bit of hand-wringing. I know I will be fine, especially if I can find some like-minded people; I get along with most people, so it's not like I can't be around other people with different points of view--but there are limits. Pros for me are that the area is great for outdoor activities that my SO and I enjoy that are not that great where we currently live (hiking, backpacking, mountain biking), being closer to one of my mother who lives in NE TN ( the rest of my family is in S. FL), and possibly a greater quality of life. I have been in the Blue Ridge area annually for a few years, so I have a general sense of what that region of the US is like. It's a beautiful area and the idea of being so close to it is very attractive.

My SO already visited for a weekend a couple of weeks ago and thinks I will like the area, especially the downtown area. He is from the Boston area, but has lived in other parts of the country as well (Miami, LA, NY).

We are unsure of whether or not we will buy in the area--we may have to rent for awhile first to figure out what areas we like. We also have to figure out what to do with our house here, which we just bought in May and is exactly what we wanted. I am dreading this a bit, as we also have 2 dogs and I imagine it will be hard to find someone who will rent to us. We have no kids, so schools aren't a concern for now.

Do you have any suggestions as to areas/towns we should investigate while we are in town? We currently live on a property with 2+ acres and would eventually like to buy something similar with as much or more land. MY SO likes tranquility. We both are not into gated-community style living. Areas on my list so far (for buying): Travelers Rest, Greer, and Taylors. For renting, I will probably be less discriminatory, and am considering Simpsonville or more "cookie-cutter" housing/communities since it may be short-term.

I would also like to find a great guitar instructor (who can teach bluegrass would be great), so if you know anyone/have any recommendations, I would be most appreciative! I have already done some searching online, so I have a general idea of where to go. However, personal recommendations are always useful.

Thanks for your time!
Welcome to the area. I know you said your hubby has a job in the city but when you say a more liberal area, Asheville, NC comes to mind. The farther you get out of downtown GVL, the less liberal it can get. Downtown Greenville is beautiful and more liberal but not immensely. That being said, I'm sure you can find what you are looking for in a house and land for a lot less up here. Travelers Rest would be a good area that would bring you closer to outdoor activities and mountains. The other areas are fine as well. I think renting is a great option and then you can get a feel.

Good luck!
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Old 11-10-2016, 03:29 PM
 
370 posts, read 315,365 times
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Greenville is a strong mix of both, Southern and Appalachian flavors. We're sitting pretty much atop a crossroads for both. Appalachian culture is basically of Black Irish influence. Very tough minded independent folk with a natural distrust for governmental authority, going all the way back to Scotland and Ireland. These are the folk so widely renowned for their Moonshine. It's not quite as prevalent these days, but you still want to be careful of whom you speak ill. Their Family trees sometimes spread ancient limbs across many fences. Supremely loyal friends and terrible enemies, it's always best to treat them with obvious respect.

You probably won't encounter these folk too often in the downtown zone. Move to Pickens, TR, Blue Ridge and on north into NC and TN and you still have a good chance of them being your neighbors. Me?.... I enjoy their culture for their straight up and honest hard working nature.
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Old 11-10-2016, 05:02 PM
 
1,070 posts, read 1,006,186 times
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Welcome to city-data! Your first post! How exciting! You write like a real pro!!
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Old 11-10-2016, 07:08 PM
 
Location: Travelers Rest S.C.
73 posts, read 100,958 times
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I moved here from SE Florida, Stuart to be exact and I would never go back. The outdoor life is wonderful and so are the people. I live north of TR and have not met anyone yet who was not friendly and welcoming. Even though I am in the "sticks" all the people around me accepted me fine. Definitely look to the area of Travelers Rest north of the city off of Hwy 25 North. Land and houses can be had fairly cheap compared to SE Florida. Get back to us after your visit.
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Old 11-10-2016, 09:19 PM
 
Location: Greenville, SC
353 posts, read 613,115 times
Reputation: 229
Piedmont Humanists - Humanists of Upstate South Carolina : Piedmont Humanists

I am not an atheist, but know a few who have met like-minded friends in the local secular humanists chapter. I think that many who live in the city of Greenville value diversity and are open-minded and friendly. I have friends who have vastly different beliefs and backgrounds from my own, but share common interests that bind us together as friends. I believe that Greenville is a welcoming place to live.
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Old 11-13-2016, 10:34 AM
 
147 posts, read 144,232 times
Reputation: 409
Based on your interests, I (also) suggest you look at TR. My wife and I moved here 14 months ago, and are very happy living near TR. We're close to the mountains, Furman Univ (lots going on there) and only 15 minutes from downtown. We, too, do a lot of biking (mt and road); for mt biking, we can be in Dupont or Issaqueena in under an hour. For road biking, we just have to roll down our driveway and we can ride for many miles on (generally) smooth, quiet, hilly and scenic country roads.

We moved from central New England where we, too, had a house and some acreage. We now live in a neighborhood where the homes are close together. It took no time for us to get accustomed to having neighbors close by. As for the religion question, neither of us are believers; although most people here are, we have not once been asked to attend services, or even where we'll be going to church. We would not take offense if we were. Point it, it's not an issue.
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