Well, the time has come to put away my “going out clothes” (the ones I used to wear before the baby, the ones that I almost got back into after the baby, but then got pregnant again and now, not so much!)
The time has also come to put away my summer-winter gear… for those who don’t live in San Francisco, this means that I will have to sadly retire my regular August attire until much much later in the ‘actual’ winter season; my down-filled North Face puffy vest, scarf, hat and mittens.
And lastly, the time has come to pack up my stereotypes of people (ahem, designers!) who don’t live in large, metropolitan areas! We are moving.
While technically there are only three of us living at our house, the USPS told me that, in fact, there are 6 of us sharing this space; some for personal reasons, and other for business. My husband, baby and maiden-named self all live here. My married-name self, combo-married/maiden-named self and my business-self all work here. Each of us had to submit a change of address form.
I have lived in San Francisco for 10 years. 10 amazing, wonderful, hip, urban, frigid-August years. I have loved the culture, the energy, the incredible phenomenal restaurants and even more than that, I have loved learning exactly where the right place is to go, or the right person to see for any need imaginable. I have been called “The Mayor of Polk Street” before, and not just once… this city has become a part of me and I am truly sad to be leaving.
Hillsborough is a gorgeous city about 30 minutes south of San Francisco. The hills, the gorgeous homes, the easy freeway access… it’s a dream community. But that is not where we’re moving!
Burlingame, just east of Hillsborough, is also a fabulous community. Burlingame Avenue is filled with cute shops, restaurants and it’s about as city-like as you get. The homes are sweet, there are tremendous public schools and the weather is fantastic. But we are also not moving there. About 2 miles south of Hillsborough and Burlingame there is a town called San Mateo. With 90,000 residents, it’s not exactly “small” (in fact, it’s 3x the size of Burlingame!) but it offers tree-lined streets, great schools, amazing weather, and a 3bd/2ba home with our name on it!
With another little girl on the way, and Brad’s commute taking 2hrs each way some days, it just became clear that unless we could hire a chauffeur, and someone to stop time every afternoon, a move was necessary. In our new ‘hood’ there’s not much in the way of a street scene, but I can walk to a Starbucks, Safeway and a Long’s drugs. While this sounds sad and depressing (maybe only to me!) it might actually benefit me and encourage me to not leave my office during business hours… forcing me to be even more productive, creative and efficient.
I struggle with what it means to be a designer in San Mateo, versus one in the city. The city is like a drug to me – I crave it, I breathe it in, I exhale it… it empowers me and motivates me. it inspires me. I don’t know who I am in San Mateo yet, and maybe it’ll take me some time to figure it out, but I guess there’s only one way to know. As my very good friend from Nashville says “The only way to it, is through it”. She’s so right. I will try to keep my biases and skepticisms on the DL while I find my way. (I said “try”!)
Worst case scenario — only 30 minutes north of Hillsborough-South, my city is there waiting for me.