THE PERKS OF A SMALLER CITY

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The story of  a big city dweller’s culture shock  coming to a small city

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AcrosstheStreet_1328

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Santa Barabara is a nice 3 hours drive from where I live.
In looking for the address of the yarn store the day after Thanksgiving, we ended up in this Quiet street…
Wasn’t this a residential neighborhood??
We parked across this house and walked.

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You see what’s missing  in the pic above?

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a white picket fence…
could it be any friendlier and less business like, I thought.
“Maybe the numbering goes into another street,” offered Hubby.

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KnittedBark_1332
Found the store eventually, even though it looked like a house decorated with Christmas lights …
this tree trunk gave it away:)
(more of that in another post)

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While the owner was looking on line if they had more of the yarn I needed, I commented on the orange tree I saw through the window. As if I was her next door neighbor, she related that even yesterday, she had squeezed some oranges from that tree for Thanksgiving breakfast.
I am a stranger, and she talks about her  personal life on Thanksgiving day!
I was perplexed.

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Left the yarn store and went around the corner to the city’s main street. Passed a bike with several gift bags on the handle bars. True, the owner was sitting inside by the window to keep an eye on it. But what if I had been a curious person and “looked” in that small green gift bag?

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StoreLantern_1325

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In the coffee shop I needed to go to the bathroom.  I expected them to open it for me.
Instead the barrista  gave me the security code to unlock the door.
I blinked a few times. Was puzzled why they had a security code if they gave it to their customers??

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After lunch and strolling up and down Main Street ( probably two hours later), we walked back to the car. We passed the bike again with all the gift bags. Yup,  the green bag was still there, with the gift paper peeking out and seemingly unstirred. Incredible!

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CoastuptoSantaBarb_4263

(coming from L.A. to Santa Barbara)

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Still marveling about our Santa Barbara’s experience we drive back
to the mega city Los Angeles,
where people do not leave personal belongings open for everyone to see or steal
and things are so much more impersonal.
In my neighborhood people do not respond to my smile
and even avert their gaze when I pass them on my walk.

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hillsSantaB&Solvang_1213

The sun playing hide and seek in the hills along the W Coast

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In defense of the city dwellers, I do understand the need for privacy and security.
Do you prefer a bigger or a smaller city?

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Thanking these Hosts
Sunday in my City  *
Blue Monday  Travel Photo  * * Good Random fun  *
Our World  Nature Notes  Blo-Ma  *
ABC –  I   *  Outdoor Wednesday  Water World  *
Share the Joy   Up Down View  * Alphabe –  Q *
Floral Friday Foto  Sky Watch  Todays Flowers  *
Weekend Reflection * Whim Doors & Windows  *
Pink Saturday  * Maleviks Garden  *

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72 thoughts on “THE PERKS OF A SMALLER CITY

  1. Wonderful view on your walk through your lens. I have always wanted to know what Santa Barbara looks like. The place you went for wool, looks like a nice quaint place to visit. I definitely like to know the story behind the tree with its knitted wool thing wrapped around it. I prefer smaller cities or towns. We say hello to everyone we see on our walks and the other people back to us. I like it being a friendly place to live. Nice shots!

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  2. I remember Santa Barbara as being a lovely town. It’s the same here with city living. When you take a trip to a smaller town those city dynamics get left behind. Thanks for linking with Today’s Flowers. I have enjoyed all your photos and the flowers were very pretty.

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  3. You asked if Dixon is “between Sacramento and Los Angeles near the highway”. hee hee… 🙂
    Yes , though Sacramento is some 400 miles from Los Angeles…Dixon is about 20 miles from Sacramento and is just off of I-80.

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    1. Two of our adult children live in the suburbs of Sac. – so we travel back and forth these two cities several times a year – and I remember the I-80:) Thanks so much!

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  4. «Louis», fed up with rising costs, crumbling infrastructure and spiraling crime moved out of the San Francisco Bay Area for rural Dixon. Peaceful. Safe. Far less expensive. Much of the Bay Area is beginning to resemble Detroit (particularly Oakland) and for the same reasons. 😦

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  5. Dear Jeannette, Warsaw was VERY different in the 1970s. For starters, Poland was a country under a Communist regime then, so the city was drab and shabby. It all changed in 1989, when we led Europe in overthrowing the USSR and nowadays Poland is relatively prosperous and a member of the EU. Things are bound to look different. Come and visit again to see for yourself :-).
    Santa Barbara looks lovely.

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    1. Zosia, I remember it well in 1989 -we followed the freedom of Eastern Germany and of Poland and the rest of the Eastern block with great delight, because we knew how things were for the people who lived there, Would love to visit Poland again:)

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  6. Santa Barbara is a beautiful area of the CA coast. I prefer smaller cities. Of course, Eugene Oregon and Ft Myers Florida are both smaller cities than LA but we wouldn’t dare leave stuff out like that in either of them. Not all small cities are as safe as SB.

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  7. Your post had a mixture of emotions today…sad at city life but smiling at the small town.
    My philosophy is smile anyway…sometimes it passes on ;D
    I prefer the quiet option myself.
    Gorgeous photos and I really enjoyed my little trip ~ thanks for sharing.
    Happy Blue Monday x

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  8. Thanks for your reply and comment on my blog. With the exception of very large cities I tend to use town and city interchangeably, although I know that’s not accurate. My brother lives in San Francisco and I love visiting there, although not as often as I’d like. I’ve never been to Santa Barbara but have seen it in several movies, Nice to see your city through your eyes.

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  9. We get to spend quite a bit of time in Santa Barbara. My sister lives there and we often stay at an RV park up by the San Marcos Pass. If I had to live in a city area, Santa Barbara would be a good choice.

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  10. Great post. Very interesting and your photos illustrate it perfectly. I’m looking forward to learning more about that yarn store. My choice would be to live somewhere small but be within reach of a big smoke! Thanks for joining in with the Up Down Challenge again this week.

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  11. this was an adventure post! enjoyed it much – 🙂
    and the tree with the crochet huggie around it – bahha –

    also liked the little notes/photos and how you compare the trusting and open culture in SB compared to the more distant feel in LA – interesting. My spouse used to live in SB for one year (he went to Westmont college for one year when he was first out of high school), and he always notes how beautiful it is there – and from your photo of driving into SB – well indeed it truly es muy bonito!
    ~y.

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  12. also, to answer your question, I think I prefer ma medium city – and while I do not prefer a large city – I would take it over a small city any day! I need (want!) people, places, and lot sod things to do!!!
    🙂

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    1. Me thinks Santa Barbara would probably be rated as a medium city – I struck up a conversation in a jewelry store where they happened to have a show right then. When a city has an art association am good to go:)

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  13. For me, I prefer a very small town about 5 miles away. I prefer knowing most people in our little township and being able to leave my keys in the car while I go into the post office or general store.
    I love the way we never lock a door or car and leave the keys in all our cars on the farm.
    I love that on an day of extreme heat, the doctor wanted me to stay at the air-conditioned hospital where they could check that I was not over-heated or dehydrated and the nurse offered to go to my farm to feed my dog and chickens and put them to bed in their coop. You certainly don’t get that in any city of any size.

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  14. Hi Jesh,

    I prefer the smaller place, but I’d never leave things for others to grab . . .

    Thanks for sharing those blues, and thank you for your kind comment.

    Have a Happy Blue Monday!

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  15. Great post, Jesh. It really resonates for me. I was born and raised in the big city, but I moved to this area about 13 years ago and have never regretted it. Living in a smaller rural community is so much more relaxed and friendly.

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  16. I lived for many years in the Los Angeles suburbs. I never felt close to neighbours, working a long way from home. Now I live in a small town, even smaller than Santa Barbara. I did go through culture shock, but I never want to go back to big city life.

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  17. I prefer to live in a smaller city but I want to have access to a larger city without driving too far. I was born in East L.A. and grew up in Montebello. After I got married we lived in Huntington Beach. Before we moved to Washington State we lived in Ventura. I loved popping up to Santa Barbara.

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  18. That’s funny, I think of Santa Barbara as a big(ger) city than mine (Camarillo) (don’t know if it actually is). It is very charming to be sure and much smaller than LA! I prefer a really small town myself (like our summer place in McCall, ID). Now that we have wifi and things like netflix and access to the wider world through the intranet, it is not as disadvantageous to only have one movie theatre etc. I do like a good library though, even with a kindle! 😉 Your images are delightful, I really love the delicate flowers by the picket fence.

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    1. Camarillo has a special meaning to me, because that was one of the possibilities for my year of internship in my psychological training – they really wanted me there, but I had 3 school age kids and the travel every day (approx. 3 hrs. from where I lived) would have been too much of a sacrifice. Glad you like it there and still can keep up with the rest of the world. Santa Barbara is without a doubt bigger than Camarillo.

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      1. So much of my exploration of this area is from the back of a motorcycle (I am also 2 years new to the area) town size doesn’t have much meaning since we take back roads everywhere! We only pass through Santa Barbara on the way to wine country. Three hours? That would have been an insane commute! I wouldn’t have done it either.

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  19. Looks like a lovely drive to and from.. I would like the small town living over a big city.. Lovely shots and scenery! Thanks for sharing, have a happy weekend!

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  20. I live on the edge of a small town, and also spend part of my time in the country. We have a lot of people that have moved into our small town from the city, and have brought their ways with them. But in the country, everybody pretty much knows everybody. You wave at everyone, maybe even talk to everyone.

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  21. That is such a cute little house ! And green like that is quite rare, very original… I love the reflection you caught on the lantern, too.

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  22. Nice reflection in that lamp Jesh. Although I live in an outer suburb of our State’s capital city, at heart I am a country/small town-village type person who appreciates the friendliness and less-frenetic pace offered by those environments which is soothing to the soul!

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  23. I enjoy the conveniences of a big city (Houston), but when we lived in Oklahoma it was a different world. I used to joke that a traffic jam there was when four cars arrived at the intersection and no one moved while each person waved for someone else to go first.

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  24. that yarn shop house is SO neat! what a refreshing day it must have been for you. i am small-town all the way. dallas was big enough for me and i couldn’t wait to get back out to the more rural areas.

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  25. Thanks for the virtual trip. I enjoyed the photos and the story. It reminded me how much I enjoyed trips up the coast of California and in particular visits to Santa Barbara. I love the atmosphere of small towns but do enjoy city life as well.

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