So as promised, I’ve decided to do a short piece reflecting on my time here in Dallas, Texas, because it’s been about six months since I moved here, and this process has unquestionably been one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. At the same time, it’s been a very eye-opening experience, and I enjoy my new home away from home enough to tell my family that I’m planning on staying here.
There’s obviously a lot to talk about in terms of what it’s like here and what the moving and adjustment process has been like, but I thought for the purposes of this post that I’d break down the experience into five major areas that I think stand out, because they’re the main areas that people back home tend to ask about.
People often think that because this is Texas, it’s boiling hot all the time, and this isn’t necessarily a mischaracterization of the climate, but it’s also not completely accurate. There have been plenty of relatively cool days since I got here, some rainstorms, some showers, and while I didn’t see any snow during the winter period I arrived in, there are still some days in Dallas where you can get away with wearing jeans and a coat, just not that many.
But with all that aside, it’s true that it tends to be warm more often than not. Sometimes the temperature can get as high as the mid-90s, but there are also days where the heat is just pleasantly warm instead of stifling, and those days are the best days to go for a walk in the park or see the sights of the city. It’s also important to remember that there are other regions of Texas that are further down South that tend to be more constantly hot all the time; Dallas is lucky in that we’re a little more towards the North and that prevents the heat from being completely unbearable.
They say the food in Dallas is to die for, and arguably they’re right. One of the things I was told before coming here was that Dallas has a great food scene, and true enough, there’s no shortage of good restaurants and good food to be had. I was lucky enough to go to a fancy seafood restaurant a few months ago in downtown Dallas and the food was absolutely delicious, and it’s a shame I don’t remember where exactly the restaurant is, because I’d love to go again.
One factor that makes the food here more enjoyable, and this ties into something I’m going to get into late, is that the cost of living here in Dallas is lower than other places, and that means you can get a good meal for less than it would be in other places. Just look at how much the necessities cost, you can get a gallon of milk here for 2 bucks and a loaf of bread for 3- that’s the kind of math I like.
THE COST OF LIVING
As I mentioned above, the cost of living here tends to be consistently lower, and that, perhaps more than anything else, is the reason I opted to move here instead of Los Angeles, because you can get more here for less, whether it’s food, apartments, living necessities, or anything else, and the best part is, it’s not a tradeoff, because you get to enjoy an amazing city for less than it would be in, say, New York City or Los Angeles.
And in fact, the fact that your dollar goes further here is a major reason why I want to make Dallas my travel base, because you can certainly afford more trips to foreign countries on a Dallas budget than on a Los Angeles budget.
Speaking generally, the Southern culture here has been a very pleasant surprise, since most people that I’ve encountered have been very gracious and polite, and I think the culture of manners shows itself in a lot of day-to-day interactions, which could come off as a breath of fresh air to some from the North, since people from my state tend to be more unapproachable, from my observations.
People have also been very welcoming to me and they’ve been interested to hear my stories about what it’s like in the North, and although they’re not as different as different countries, the landscape and environment in the North isn’t quite like Dallas, which is has been the source of me trying to adjust to life here and blend in, and I like to think it’s going very well so far.
People at home like to ask what the next step is, now that I’ve successfully moved to Dallas, and the answer I’ve been giving them lately is that I very much want to stay here, as I’ve greatly enjoyed my time here so far, and I’m constantly trying to find the best way to ensure that I’ll be able to stay for many months to come.
Some people at work have said that what I did, moving out here mostly by myself, was a brave thing to do, and I appreciate the thought and the sentiment, although the only thing I’d say in response is that the move isn’t quite over yet, and there are still some details that need to be resolved, so I’d hold off on congratulations until the very last detail is settled- when that day comes, I’d be happy to celebrate with them.