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People who live in small towns read about large cities and see it on television. Who, for instance, hasn't heard of Broadway in New York City? How many televison series have been filmed in NYC, LA or Chicago? It doesn't take rocket science to figure out those are BIG cities.
On the other hand, how many successful TV series was ever filmed in a real small town like Troy, MO.? How many folks in Chicago read about corn crops in central Illinois, or John Deere laying off employees in Moline?
Media shapes public opinion and what it wants viewers to know in videoo clips and sound bytes. Therefore it is more likely that small wotn folks know more about what they will be getting if they move to Chicago, than Chicago folks know what they will get if they move to Oakford, Illinois. It is not nearly the culture shock for farm folk as it is for city folk.
My wife and I moved here from Raleigh area, NC and we expected there to be several changes. For one thing, we came from the largest concentration of PhD's to the QC, so if you've been to college and you lived in a larger area where most of your friends were educated, then you can expect that most of the people you will probably meet here will not be as educated by those standards. I don't in any way reflect that people are dumb here, but just realize that this place is not like Chicago, Madison, Fairfax or any of the other places that people complain that it is NOT like.
It's a post industrial area, so there are run down buildings and the such, but I don't understand the high crime thing I read about. I think there were one or two murders last year, which takes Durham, NC less than a week to happen. I think you'll find the fear of crime is somewhat overrated.
There are not a lot of ethnic food stores, but there is most everything if you LOOK HARD ENOUGH. There is an indian grocery store in Moline, authentic Mexican in East Moline. There's not a large variety of those places, so your trade off for living in a smaller area is this, but Iowa City is great to go to and is about an hour away. Hopefully as the QC grows, these things that are missing will not be anymore.
I will say this... the traffic compared to any of those cities you miss is great. Usually 15 minutes to get anywhere across town, so what you lose in having all those places is waiting in traffic to get to those places.
As far as living, I can only really speak for the Iowa side of things. My wife and I chose the East Village. Great neighbors, parties all the time and most people living there are well educated, so if you need to be with educated people, you can live there and the houses are all unique, old and beautiful. Bettendorf has a lot of new sprawl, so if you're looking for a new house, I guess that's a good place to live. There are some other good neighborhoods and then not so good neighborhoods, but that's the case whereever you live.
I haven't really run into the "you're not from around here" thing. A lot of my neighbors are transplants too, so maybe I'm just isolated because of that.
As far as the no meat markets, etc.. I'm guessing that that lady never went to the Farmer's Market where you can get quality steak, pork, buffalo, chicken as well as a bunch of other vegetables. It's nothing like the "1001 places you have to see in the US" market of Madison, WI, but I think it's pretty incredible.
Again, it's unfortunate, but in the Quad Cities, you have to really know where to look to get a lot of these things because there is only one or two places to get some of these things, so the best thing to do is ask around and find the right people who share your interests. The average Quad Cities resident, might not know about the great coffee roaster or bakery in Davenport.
Any time someone moves coast to coast or south to north there is a culture shock. If one cannot live without Indian food than he or she should live near a large medical community like Chicago and Iowa City.
The problem with relocating to the Quad Cities is: A- It is not one large community with suburbs as Chicago is, it is three small communities and one oarger community separated by tne Mississippi River, and B- these four communities are located in the two largest corn producing states in America. Sadly, some of the relocatprs never do their homework and because of it they learn too late they spent too much money to move 1600 miles only to discover they traded cotton bolls and bailers for corn fields and John Deere tractors.
Bless their little hearts those folks should not be mad. They made an honest mistake when they underestimated our 170.000 farming families. To err is human and the only way to correct the terrible mistake these folks made in judgement, is to go home and write off the loss as one of life's litte lessons. There is no doubt some folks will be happier with friends and family, but they will also never have the opportunity to know or experience what they missed.
The saddest words of tongue or pen. are the words "It might have been." I wish those folks God speed and hope they have a pleasant journey home.
Now for the relocators who are looking for anthentic Indian, Italian, Irish, Polish, Lebanese, Greek, Czech, Bohemian, German, French, English, Scottish, Chinese, Asian, Phillipino, Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, American and Soul food, as well as fine dining, pro sports, New York fashions and bakeries, then you want to go to Chicago. It is the premier location for Costco, Whole Foods, ikea and Trader Joe's. Chicago also has the best research library in the Midwest and some nice 10 lane highways.
I did some research last year for a lady with 4 children. It seems to me the school that best fit her particular needs was in Bettendorf - which is not near RI Arsenal if that is where you will be stationed. I used Google and Bing to search schools in eacg of the communities: Moline, Rock Island, Davenoport and Bettenforf. I would also be looking in the Iowa Forum, too. The good schools will tell you what services they offer parents and kids. If you are career military, school is always an issue everytime you move.
Thank you for being one of many men and women that protect. support and represent our nation at home and abroad. God bless you all. If you need more help come back and ask.
Iowa and Illinois are the #1 and #2 corn producers in America; we feed the world. You will find a lot of small farming communities, and a few large communiites mixed in. But, within a 200 mile radius you will find 2 state fairs, a regional state fair, all kinds of sports activies from skiing to skeet. The Amana Colonies in Iowa, zoos at Chicago, Moline, Peoria, Bloomington and Springfield, and Decatur Illinois plus a wild animal park in Peoria and zoos in Iowa (i don't know where they are located), hiking and biking, campling and fishishing, huntings, the largest wetlands outside of the Florida Everglades in Illinois plus many lakes and state parks in Illinois. This is an Illnois forum and this information is not to aay Iowa does not have the same; I simply do not know.
What I do know from talking to veterans is that Iowa City has excellent VA care and also excellent non-military care. There are two Level 1 tertiary care children's hosptials in Illinois that have Level IIID subspecialy physicians on staff. I also have an adult friend who lives in the Quad Cities that did not like the care her mother got in Illinois Hospitals, but likes the Iowa care fine. As active duty I expect you will have a base hospital, but I don't know.
You will find green speace and open space and firendly people in both states. And cold winters and humid summers thanks to the Mississippi River.
I have lived in the Quad Cities for a few years now and I came from a much larger city than Madison. A city that is very diverse and a city that I called home my entire life until I moved here. Somehow, you have managed to find nothing but bad in the Quad Cities and I can't help but think it is due to your negative attitude. I find the people that live here quite nice and inviting and there is plenty to do. If you want to shop for high end food or clothing, take a day trip to Chicago. I was also able to find a job immediately. With the right level of positivity in your life you can find happiness and good people anywhere - and I've found it here.
First of all the QC is a great place to live. As far as the school system goes, do your research because you can' label all of the communities in the QC based upon one. The Davenport school system ranks very high in comparison to the Illinois side so quit whining because the fault is on your lack of information. I won't even elaborate on the other things you listed because everything you listed in not based on actual facts. Sounds like you had a bad attitude to start, they are better off without you.
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