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Old 11-12-2008, 08:04 AM
 
93 posts, read 381,486 times
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Wow, great responses, thank you!

I am very much into organic/healthy eating, as a breast cancer survivor - health is important, also exercise and walking every day. It sounds like maybe I should concentrate on areas like New Tampa perhaps? Can't go to Sarasota unfortunately because my goal is eventually to share a house with my sister.
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Old 11-12-2008, 08:54 AM
 
Location: Bay Area
2,406 posts, read 7,186,652 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aconite View Post
That's not been my experience at all, Davachka, but it does variy tremendously depending on where in the Bay Area you live. If you're in New Tampa or Westchase (long categorized as Desperate Housewives on steroids), things will look much less diverse or vegetarian/vegan-friendly than, say, Seminole Heights, parts of South Tampa, St. Pete, or old Clearwater. Thonotosassa and the eastern 'burbs definitely have a little bit of bleedover from Polk County (a.k.a. Mississippi-By-The-Mouse).
It also depends on your social group, I think. I've gotten pretty used to cooking vegetarian for parties or potlucks-- I'm not (too much a southerner to deny myself barbecue), but a huge percentage of people I know/run into are.
The religious diversity thing is trickier. People used to figure since I wore a lot of below-knee-length skirts to work and wore my hair in a long braid I was Pentecostal. Uh...not hardly. But I don't wear a pentacle the size of a dinner plate, and I'm a soccer mom, so I'm not stereotypically Pagan. IME, folks see what they expect to see.

ETA: Just noticed: you've only been here four months? Four months after any move you'll know an area well enough to sort of recognize the superficial qualities of a new city, and not be anywhere near finding any depth. It takes a good year, often two, to get that kind of handle on things. Particularly in an area as large-- and yes, diverse-- as Tampa Bay.
I'm not in New Tampa or Westchase, and yes, we get around to all those places that you mention. I'm not saying Tampa Bay does not have vegetarian/health food options, artsy areas, nor am I saying it has no diversity. It does, however, have LESS than other areas that I have lived. You have to look for it as opposed to it being everywhere, as it is in many west coastal areas that I have both visited and lived in. You mention 4 months is not long enough to see everything, and I agree, but other areas I have lived are more abundant. We have walked into quite a few restaurants with no vegetarian options on the menu, this has happened to me more here than in CA, NY or IN. We are obviously not moving solely to this, and we like it here very much. But a foodie town, or area, it is definitely not, at least from a vegetarian's perspective.

Another example, we just went to an organic farmers market, for its grand opening. We expected to buy our weekly produce there. We were extremely disappointed, there was very little to choose from there, it was not a market, more like a tiny stand, with some guy singing and strumming his guitar nearby. The organic markets I've been to in CA and NY were huge, and many fruits and veggies to choose from. This one, I couldn't even make a decent salad from what they offered. Yes, there are options here, but to be realistic, a healthy living or artsy mecca it is NOT.
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Old 11-12-2008, 08:56 AM
 
Location: Bay Area
2,406 posts, read 7,186,652 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rheadabovewater View Post
Wow, great responses, thank you!

I am very much into organic/healthy eating, as a breast cancer survivor - health is important, also exercise and walking every day. It sounds like maybe I should concentrate on areas like New Tampa perhaps? Can't go to Sarasota unfortunately because my goal is eventually to share a house with my sister.
I'm guessing you'll want to stay away from New Tampa, its a newly built suburb of strip malls and gated subdivisions.

South Tampa, St. Pete, Dunedin, Palm Harbor, you may like....I would just come and drive around for a while and get a feel for some areas.
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Old 11-12-2008, 01:41 PM
 
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I think you should consider not living with your sister. If she is in Thonotosassa to be near work, there is no way she'll want to move. And if you are new to the city, there is no way you should live in Thonotosassa. I grew up in Tampa so I'm sort of anti-Pinellas County (St. Pete & Clearwater). I like to cross the bay for the beach and change of scenery, but I'm bias and Prefer Tampa. If you live across the bay, you will be at least an hour's drive from your sister depending on how close to the beach you are and what time of day it is. While FL itself is a more conservative state than Cali, I never found people in Tampa to be overly political one way or the other. I am somewhat liberal, but never felt out of place. Now living in TX I am completely out of place. I think you can definitely meet your niche of people in the Tampa area and you will like it just fine. Having family near by will help. Good luck!
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Old 11-12-2008, 01:49 PM
 
93 posts, read 381,486 times
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Hi Michelle, thanks. My sister lives in Thonotosassa because she likes it there (go figure) but she works in central Tampa. Her daughter lives in St. Pete and my sister never seems to have a problem with all the driving she does, to visit her friends and her daughter.

I would never live with my sister where she is, because she's in a small duplex and it's in a terrible area. I think I wouldn't have any problem living with her as long as we get a house that's big enough ;P

Also my sister works swing shift (she's a counselor) so that makes her commute easier too.
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Old 11-12-2008, 05:59 PM
 
Location: Eastern time zone
4,469 posts, read 6,549,302 times
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The one thing I do miss in this area is the wealth of Indian shops near where we lived in NC. I can find the groceries just fine here-- even my favorite tandoori spice-- but inexpensive sari fabric or salwar kameez? Not so much. It's probably out there somewhere, though, so if anyone has a clue where to look, holler!
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Old 11-14-2008, 08:00 PM
 
1 posts, read 1,770 times
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Default Florida vs. the west coast

I don't get why so many Californians have this attitude that "we're cool and liberal, and the rest of the country is backwards and conservative."

I think you'll find that while politics and lifestyle choices may be important to people here, it might be less "in your face" than in California. I'm a northeasterner who lived in the Pacific NW for a while, and I noticed that people tended to voice their political views much more loudly on the west coast. People there wouldn't want anything to do with conservatives and seemed to have a superior attitude. Here, my neighbors and I get along great, and we rarely talk politics. I don't consider myself apathetic either, but I'm not going to get all upset because I have a Republican governor, etc. I just think things are more laid back here. If it's those things are that important to you, you might not be happy here. Live and let live.

Also, Florida is not really the south, at least in Tampa and the other major cities. Most of my friends are from NY, NJ, etc. The native Floridians have for the most part, welcomed us. Go down to Miami for a week and explain to the Cuban immigrant that arrived here on a boat that he's now a southerner and let us know what he says. I think that if you spend a week traveling around Florida, you will find incredible diversity.

Also, we moved here for family too. I don't love it or even like it here all the time, but the time my kids and us spend with the family was worth the move. I wouldn't go to Thonotosassa though
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Old 11-24-2008, 05:58 PM
 
Location: Tampa
68 posts, read 197,776 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aconite View Post
It did indeed. Shocked the crap out of an awful lot of people, that's for sure. Probably not the least of which was Brian Blair.
LOL!! So true. Did you here he's threatening Kevin B with a lawsuit? Talk about a poor sport!
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Old 11-24-2008, 06:01 PM
 
Location: Tampa
68 posts, read 197,776 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rheadabovewater View Post
Wow, great responses, thank you!

I am very much into organic/healthy eating, as a breast cancer survivor - health is important, also exercise and walking every day. It sounds like maybe I should concentrate on areas like New Tampa perhaps? Can't go to Sarasota unfortunately because my goal is eventually to share a house with my sister.
Westchase has all the walking paths (etc) of New Tampa. It just depends on how far you want to commute for work.
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Old 11-24-2008, 06:02 PM
 
Location: Tampa
68 posts, read 197,776 times
Reputation: 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by lutztampafl View Post
I don't get why so many Californians have this attitude that "we're cool and liberal, and the rest of the country is backwards and conservative."

I think you'll find that while politics and lifestyle choices may be important to people here, it might be less "in your face" than in California. I'm a northeasterner who lived in the Pacific NW for a while, and I noticed that people tended to voice their political views much more loudly on the west coast. People there wouldn't want anything to do with conservatives and seemed to have a superior attitude. Here, my neighbors and I get along great, and we rarely talk politics. I don't consider myself apathetic either, but I'm not going to get all upset because I have a Republican governor, etc. I just think things are more laid back here. If it's those things are that important to you, you might not be happy here. Live and let live.

Also, Florida is not really the south, at least in Tampa and the other major cities. Most of my friends are from NY, NJ, etc. The native Floridians have for the most part, welcomed us. Go down to Miami for a week and explain to the Cuban immigrant that arrived here on a boat that he's now a southerner and let us know what he says. I think that if you spend a week traveling around Florida, you will find incredible diversity.

Also, we moved here for family too. I don't love it or even like it here all the time, but the time my kids and us spend with the family was worth the move. I wouldn't go to Thonotosassa though
Too funny. Considering California has a republican governor as well!
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