I was born in Southern California, raised here, went to school here, work here, and currently live here. So, as you can see, I was born here and have never really left the area, outside of vacations here and there. My friend, who I went to school with, worked in Hawaii, currently goes to law school on the east coast, and when asked if he’d ever come back to the left coast, answered no, and that he was done with. I know a couple people like him, who grew up with me, then moved and work in other locations. I also know a lot of people who I grew up with here that still live here, and that would never in a million years leave. My law school friend always makes fun of me and my friends for never leaving our bubble, our comfort zone of Orange County. My girlfriend, who moved here a few years ago from the Philippines, is the same as him in that she would not mind leaving here to go practically anywhere. Just pack up your stuff and go move there. It’d be an adventure, and fun she says.
I can see what both he and her are saying. Yeah, it might be fun to just pick up and leave, and explore, and live in another life. But, when I think about it, it’s not really something that interests me. My friends and family are here, I bought my home here, am happy with what I have. I am not especially good at making friends. I have live in this new home for 2 years now and I literally only know the name of one neighbor, and that’s only because it’s easy for me to remember because it’s the same as one of my friends. I don’t spend a lot of time in my front yard, so it’s not like I see my neighbors all that often. If I went to the market or the library or the beach and ran into one of my neighbors, I am not sure that I would recognize any of them, outside of my next door neighbor. When I get home from work, I have no desire to socialize. I just want to go home and relax. Meeting new people and friends is just not something I put any effort into. Granted, if I moved to a strange place, I might put more of a concerted effort into meeting others. I’m not exactly sure though, especially if the girlfriend was with me. More than likely, if I met anyone, it would be because she met someone and then planned an outing for all of us as she is much more friendly and social than I am.
So, is my friend right in that I am just too scared and not willing to take any risks to leave my bubble/comfort zone? I think that in some regard he has a point. But, on the other, he is off base. Just because he doesn’t like staying in any particular place for too long does not mean that he is more willing to leave his comfort zone/bubble than I am. I think it just means that he has different interests and ideas of “living” than I do. Not everyone is the same, as can be witnessed by the fact that I have many friends who were born, raised and still living here like me as well as some that are like him. I think that I could be just as happy living some other place than living here. But, I love the So Cal weather and environment, my friends and family and can’t imagine it being better some place else. And it’s not like I’ve never left this area. In fact, I have travelled more internationally than most people I know. I’ve been to Tokyo twice, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, S. Korea (for a day), France (Paris), Spain (Barcelona), Italy (Rome, Venice, Florence, Pompei), Vancouver, and Tijuana. So, I’ve left my “bubble,” just not permanently. In almost all of those places, I had a lot of fun
As for the girlfriend, I think the reason that she is more willing to just pick up and leave is because she has lived here for only 5 years or so, moving here from another country. She does not have roots here or is anchored here. So, it’s easier to sever ties when you don’t have anything holding you back. If she was born and raised here and her family never moved to another country maybe she’d be more like me too. I think that is partially true, but something tells me that she’d still be more like my law school friend.