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Old 06-22-2011, 07:20 PM
 
Location: Des Moines, IA
219 posts, read 570,272 times
Reputation: 80

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David, I know this is somewhat off topic but what city did you decide on? How do you compare your experience with CA to your current choice?

Ceece that's the thing... I highly doubt LA will be my final destination. I just want to try it out for a year or two. I'm interested California and the West Coast in general. I love San Francisco. I would love to make a go of it out there but those are some prices that I just can't get a grip on, even with roommates and budgets. I also love Portland and Seattle.. but something is drawing me to LA. I can't quite explain it.
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Old 06-22-2011, 08:27 PM
 
Location: Near L.A.
4,114 posts, read 9,475,098 times
Reputation: 3372
Quote:
Originally Posted by TygrrEyzz View Post
David, I know this is somewhat off topic but what city did you decide on? How do you compare your experience with CA to your current choice?

Ceece that's the thing... I highly doubt LA will be my final destination. I just want to try it out for a year or two. I'm interested California and the West Coast in general. I love San Francisco. I would love to make a go of it out there but those are some prices that I just can't get a grip on, even with roommates and budgets. I also love Portland and Seattle.. but something is drawing me to LA. I can't quite explain it.
Interesting. I'm moving to the Bay Area for a nearly year-long position and immensely looking forward to it. It's truly a beautiful area, you have the splendors of SF, Half Moon Bay, Monterrey, and Marin right there, plus cool neighborhoods throughout. I'm not sure I'd want to make it a permanent home, or even long-term, but who the heck knows. I will admit to having a better impression of the Southern California region during my visits out there--except sitting in traffic on the 134 and 405, of course.

L.A. has a draw that is difficult to explain. It's a success and failure in many aspects of urban planning because it defies and "fails to meet" the "standards" that many planners the nation over seem to utilize. It's dense like metropolitan New York (although not Lower Manhattan), but decentralized like Atlanta and Dallas. Yet, relative to the massive population of 20+ million that live in the region (L.A., O.C., Ventura Co., I.E.), it's actually not that spread out; Atlanta, Dallas, Houston, and even Lexington, KY are much less dense than L.A.

L.A. is a major port of entry for East Asian and Latin American immigrants and products and that is reflected in so many of its enclaves, neighborhoods and first-ring suburbs (except for the Armenians in Glendale.) It's also a city that gives you options for transport, however expensive they may be; while it is a "city of the car," so are Atlanta, Dallas, Houston, and Lexington. But Metro and Metrolink also provide modern rail options for transport throughout the region, although with 30/10 Metro should have a system rivaling NYC and London. Now, those are planning successes. You can also view the fact that only 56% of the originally planned system was ever built as both a success and failure; neighborhoods kept in tact, but look at the traffic.

This, for me, is a pretty telling story: I was sitting in Houston's Bush Airport, the stop between Louisville, KY and LAX. At the flight gate, I saw: The stereotypical skateboarder dudes. Preppy young women who, stereotypically, looked like they were trying to "make it" in "the biz" (more than likely they weren't originally from L.A.) An older man of Hispanic descent wearing a cowboy hat. Two African-American women wearing dresses based on African tradition. Normal families like you'd find in Des Moines, except they were wearing L.A. sports team stuff. And I thought, "diversity!"

For the terminus ad quem, nearly every place, even small towns in rural America, have some level of diversity of many kinds--race, thought, political, socioeconomic, etc. But L.A. seems to be a truly liberal city (yes, it's left wing, but I mean the literal definition of "liberal".) It also seems to be a city that doesn't take itself too proudly (read: prideful but not arrogant) and seriously; I mean, look at Seattle, SF, Boston, and even Chicago, and even Louisville and you'll find what I mean.

Maybe for me it wasn't so difficult to explain, after all, lol.

Last edited by EclecticEars; 06-22-2011 at 08:41 PM..
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Old 06-22-2011, 08:40 PM
 
Location: Sometimes Portland, other times LA
600 posts, read 1,315,915 times
Reputation: 246
Quote:
Originally Posted by TygrrEyzz View Post
David, I know this is somewhat off topic but what city did you decide on? How do you compare your experience with CA to your current choice?

Ceece that's the thing... I highly doubt LA will be my final destination. I just want to try it out for a year or two. I'm interested California and the West Coast in general. I love San Francisco. I would love to make a go of it out there but those are some prices that I just can't get a grip on, even with roommates and budgets. I also love Portland and Seattle.. but something is drawing me to LA. I can't quite explain it.
Your money would go a LOT farther in both of these cities. I am from Portland and know Seattle well too
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Old 06-23-2011, 05:45 AM
 
Location: Hollywood, CA
397 posts, read 824,273 times
Reputation: 330
If you want an Iowa life stay in Iowa. That is the best advice I can give. I don't want to sound mean but it almost seems like you want to bring Iowa with you.

A three bedroom townhouse? In the Valley? Stay in Iowa if that is what you want. Anything you can afford, townhouse wise, is going to be either too far from the city to enjoy it or in a horrible neighborhood (probably both).

If you want something different from Iowa, completely different, you gotta live in the Basin. That is where most of the excitement happens. And you're not gonna get a Townhouse. You give up space for all the benefits of living in Los Angeles. Is that the life you really want?

I could easily live on $2,500 a month. And I live in the "good" area of Hollywood. But I also live in an apartment, with a roommate, and gave up owning a car. I HATED driving here. The traffic, the gas prices, parking... People find all sorts of ways to live here. I decided to live in an area where public transit was feasible!

It's a different life from the midwestern life that I once lived. But, honestly, I wouldn't go back to that old life.
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Old 06-23-2011, 06:42 AM
 
Location: Sherman Oaks, CA
6,294 posts, read 15,771,894 times
Reputation: 8353
I've lived in L.A. all my life. How do I do it? First of all, I've never owned a home. I rent a nice apartment in a decent area - without roommates. I'm also driving the same car I bought new almost ten years ago; my Toyota Corolla, while extremely dependable, has never been flashy or eye-catching. I don't spend very much on hair, cosmetics, and clothing. However, this is because I was a single parent for many years. In addition, I cook most of my meals at home, as eating out can get incredibly expensive. I don't go out a lot, mostly because I'm allergic to traffic, and it takes forever to get anywhere!

I was also fortunate enough to get a good job, and the pay has greatly increased year by year. I've been there 11 1/2 years, and have no intention of leaving. My commute is only twelve miles one way.

To the OP, yes, you can live your dream, but it may be a very different reality. You're going to have to make certain sacrifices if you really want to do this, but if you're prepared, then go for it.
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Old 06-23-2011, 07:56 AM
 
Location: Arvada, CO
13,451 posts, read 25,355,178 times
Reputation: 13510
Quote:
Originally Posted by TygrrEyzz View Post
David, I know this is somewhat off topic but what city did you decide on? How do you compare your experience with CA to your current choice?
Denver.

It's cheaper, there's less traffic, and the only thing it's really lacking is an ocean. I lucked out and found a well-paying job here to boot. To me, the snow is a bonus, and I'll take it instead of the heat, smog, and lack of seasons in Southern CA.

Even though I'm a Southern CA native, I've never felt it was for me, so I got out. When I left, I was working two jobs, commuting a half hour each way to each one, had no time to enjoy life, and was barely scraping by, which sadly is a reality for a lot of working (and what would be middle) class folks down there.

It wasn't worth it to me because I didn't love it. But a lot of people do, and they willingly make sacrifices to continue living there, and I give kudos to them for it.

If CA is your dream, go for it.

Hear that?

It's your life calling.
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Old 06-23-2011, 08:55 AM
 
3,552 posts, read 5,707,857 times
Reputation: 3473
Good for you! But get ready for the Denver bashers here
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Old 06-23-2011, 09:36 AM
 
Location: Arvada, CO
13,451 posts, read 25,355,178 times
Reputation: 13510
Quote:
Originally Posted by yamota View Post
Good for you! But get ready for the Denver bashers here
Thanks! I'd welcome the bashing, but hopefully we can stay on topic.
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Old 06-23-2011, 05:45 PM
 
14 posts, read 24,408 times
Reputation: 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by David Aguilar View Post
Thanks! I'd welcome the bashing, but hopefully we can stay on topic.
Ugh Denver! Actually I just moved to LA a month ago after living in Denver for a year. Denver is beautiful, but I'm from the south and don't do well in cold weather and I HATED driving in the snow.
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Old 06-23-2011, 06:11 PM
 
11,715 posts, read 36,663,884 times
Reputation: 7522
Quote:
Originally Posted by melodramatic View Post
Ugh Denver! Actually I just moved to LA a month ago after living in Denver for a year. Denver is beautiful, but I'm from the south and don't do well in cold weather and I HATED driving in the snow.
Fitting username.
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