We get to live in a very family-oriented town within 15 miles of downtown ATX. I've mostly lived paycheck-to-paycheck in Austin, but now I own my own business and that should change soon. We are homeowners after being lifelong renters, which is exciting. Growing up in the Bay Area, I watched a lot of the personality of the area disappear as tech took over.
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There are a lot of other really nice cities (like Austin) that are starting to be able to compete with the Bay Area in both atmosphere and job opportunities.
And a lot of these other cities can be more affordable to live in, which I think is really important. The weekly music & art scene, the abundance of everything delicious (whatever you crave: ice cream, shawarma, burrito, poke, acai bowl, banh mi, artisanal cocktails) all within walking radius, the convenience & how easy it is to get around (walk, bike, Muni, BART, ferry) and last but not least, my rent-control apartment.
We have a nice home where we're not cramped with two kids and there are great public schools.
I have a rocking job, but it took a couple of years to find the right opportunity.
Sam Whittington often catches himself daydreaming about Austin, Texas.
The affordable housing, the laid-back lifestyle, the Tex Mex – all the stereotypes of Southern living have captured his imagination, he says.
Also, Oregon's natural beauty is truly amazing and very accessible from Portland.
SFGATE is exploring how people's lives change after leaving the Bay Area, for better or for worse, in a new series.
“Austin, I think, has retained its individual spirit, while SF has been slowly selling its spirit to high bidders.” Like a true millennial, Whittington’s Austin inclinations have inspired some philosophical soul-searching.
Is it “the growing mediocrity of the city” that inspires him to leave, he wonders, or is it a general discontent with “the world”?
I so missed our radiant California sun melting the heat into my bones.