10 Things I’m looking forward to about Atlanta

A Disclaimer: I’ve kind of cheated on this one. I started this draft about a month ago, but I’ve now been back in Atlanta for a few day and that’s helped me flesh out the list. I created the post to make me feel better about 10 things I’ll miss about San Francisco.

1) Fewer Pedestrians – I admit I’ve played both sides of this argument. I’m sad I’ll be walking less, but when I am driving it’s much nicer when there aren’t so many pedestrians to get in the way. Atlanta is a car town. When I was in Atlanta over Christmas I did notice that the joggers like to jog at night and they jog a little recklessly, but I think I can handle it.

2) Sweet Tea! – I simply don’t understand why the rest of the country hasn’t caught on to how great this beverage is. I also won’t miss non-southern waiters & waitresses saying “no we have unsweetened tea and there’s the sugar.” Like it’s the same!?!! I also look forward to pronouncing it “sweet tay.”

3) Lake Burton – Sure, it’s not technically Atlanta. It’s really in Clayton, GA which is about 2 hours away, but that’s a lot closer to Atlanta than it is to San Francisco. Lake Burton is probably my favorite place to chill out. I’m really looking forward to being able to make weekend trips up there regularly (as opposed to twice a year like I’ve been doing for the past eight years).

4) Four Distinct Seasons – I really liked the weather in San Francisco, but there were really only two seasons – nice weather season and rainy season. There’s nothing wrong with those two seasons, but four is twice as many seasons (mathematically speaking). I’m looking forward to seeing the leaves change, then later breaking a sweat the second I walk out the door, then later watching the leaves fall, then later wondering if there will be snow this year. I think those changes are therapeutic – each change helps you appreciate the others, and I’m looking forward to living with them again.

5) Thunder Storms – Maybe this is related to the four seasons, but it took me a while to realize that there are never thunder storms in San Francisco. When I occasionally experienced on when I was in another part of the country I realized that I really like them and had missed them. I’m looking forward to having more thunder storms here (especially since we need them with the drought). I also MUCH prefer thunder storms to earthquakes!

6) A Band – I’m really looking forward to either starting a band or joining a band in Atlanta. I used to be in a band in New York, and some of my fondest memories come from those days. I miss it terribly – damn those graduate school acceptances that broke up our band! Sure, you can say I could have started a band in San Francisco. I tried it briefly and it just didn’t pan out. I don’t have a great reason about why I didn’t try again, except that maybe in the back of my mind I always felt San Francisco was a temporary stop for me. I foresee a lot of procrastination about this one, but now that I’ve stated it semi-publicly hopefully that will be more motivation to make it happen.

7) A Dog (maybe) – I don’t think there’s much chance I will get a dog immediately in Atlanta, but Atlanta is a much more reasonable city to have a dog than San Francisco or Chicago or New York. It’s nice to know it’s a possibility. I’m actually slightly allergic to most dogs, but I still love them. I grew up with dogs, so I’m sure I could just get acclimated to having a dog, right? Here’s some gratuitous picture of the dogs that have been in my family:


Whit and Missy

Sugar’s first day home:

sugar puppy

My sister’s dog Belle (who I often accidentally call “Sugar”):

Belle in a box

8 ) Huge Grocery Stores – This is something that I definitely took for granted when I lived in Atlanta before, and I forgot about until I got back. The grocery stores have like twice as much stuff!! I’m a guy who has to go down every aisle every time I go to the grocery store, and Atlanta has so much more excitement on every aisle!

9)Old Friends – I’ve been very fortunate to make good new friends everywhere I’ve lived.  It makes me feel so good to know that now I can travel so many places in this country and have someone to grab a beer with when I’m there. Still, there is no substitute for old friends – the people who knew you before you had a job. The people who knew you when the only thing you were trying to be was yourself. A lot of my old friends have left Atlanta, but some of the best ones are still here. And the ones who left are a lot closer to Atlanta than they were to San Francisco.

10) Family – I like my family. I mean I have lived out of town for 8 years now, but I still think I like my family most of the time. And I think I’m fortunate to feel that way. Not all of my immediate family lives in Atlanta, but it’s a lot more than in San Francisco (Ok, in the end I had two cousins living out there, but we were not very good about hanging out). I think it was important to explore the country, but in the long run it just makes sense to live near family.

Honorable Mention: Chick-fil-A, hot women.

A Few things I’m not looking forward to: Shaving every day, August humidity.

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