The FOR SALE sign went up on May 1st and immediately, all our Berkeley friends started inviting us to dinner. All of these 'last visits' have been wonderful, and over every dinner table, people asked us questions.
I'm amazed at how much they want to know. Not just why we're leaving, or how we are doing it, but what we know about life in Arkansas, and how we expect to be spending our time there.
And everybody asked me to blog.
I don't want to lose my connection with these dear friends in California. If a blog can do that for us, I'm certainly willing to try.
We lived in this Berkeley house for 22 years. Its a great house in a great neighborhood, and I have loved living here. I have also loved Berkeley, warts and all. But while it is heartbreaking to leave all of this behind, Berkeley is just too expensive for me now.
Years ago, we started looking for some place with a lower cost of living. There are websites that help you find them, like WhereToRetire.com and FindYourSpot.com. Little Rock kept turning up for me on those sites because of its amenities. And when Katie got married, bought a home, and had a baby in Arkansas, that settled us on Little Rock.
The town has about the same population as Berkeley. There is a University (with medical, law, and journalism schools), a farmers market, and a Whole Foods store. There is not a Buddhist community that I have been able to locate in Web searches, but maybe there are Buddhists who don't have websites? I'll have to look for them. In any case, I do believe that we can be happy in Little Rock.
Will our California friends come and visit us in Arkansas? That's a good question. I get blank stares from them now, when I suggest it. But we'll see. We'll see.
Today, NPR reported that Marshall Islanders are also migrating to Arkansas. Could we have started a trend?