Saturday, July 7, 2012

Love and hate for the Lone Star State

The cool front has already moved in here, and I could not be happier.  It's a gorgeous 73 degrees out right now,  headed toward 82 as a high.  I turned off the AC and opened the windows.  I love fresh air in the house, and if I could go without ever turning on the AC, I would be a happy girl.  This is one thing I do not miss about my time living in Texas.

After college, I looked for a job in the Midwest, but I did not have any success.  My luck changed when I turned my attention south.  I had two friends living in Texas, so I thought I'd give the Lone Star State a chance.  And apparently it wanted to give me a chance too.  I found a job -- a good job -- very quickly, and as a result, I drove to Texas all by myself Labor Day weekend with as much as I could fit in my little Dodge Neon. (The rest of my belongings would arrive on a truck a week later.)

I lived and worked in two different (but somewhat similar) Texas towns.  They were both located just southeast of Dallas-Fort Worth, so I spent a lot of time in the Metroplex --- going to concerts and (later) attending Rangers games.  I met a lot of incredible people there, including many friends who are still among my closest. 

Me and the boys I worked with at my first Texas job.
Me and my co-workers from my second Texas job.
Just a few of the awesome friends I met. We went to lots of concerts.
This is still my happy place.  I just don't get there often anymore.

 I left Texas in the summer of 2006, due to a number of factors.  One, I really missed my family.  Seeing them once a year just wasn't cutting it.  Two, I unexpectedly lost one of my closest friends.  She passed away in her sleep suddenly at the age of 29, and I was lost.  So I made my way back to my home state of Iowa, and I have absolutely no regrets.  It's been the right choice for me.

Whenever I go back to visit Texas, people ask me when I'm moving back.  My answer is easy:  Never.

It's not that I hate Texas.  Not at all.  The four years I spent there were pretty good.  If you overlook the fact that my car was broken into, my apartment was robbed, I had my heart broken and a friend died. 

There are things I miss about Texas.  I miss access to so many entertainment options, Rangers Ballpark and my friends.  But that's about it.

But there are many more things I don't miss about Texas.  I don't miss the heat, the overwhelming state pride (which came off as arrogance in many cases) and, of course, the distance from my family.

I don't see myself ever moving back to Texas.  I know better than to say never.  Because life might surprise me, but it would absolutely have to be the perfect situation.  Otherwise, I'm quite content in Iowa.

I hope my Texas friends aren't offended by this entry.  They truly are the best thing I got out of that state, and I will never forget that.

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