In April our family moved 2600 miles across the country from Oakland, CA to Asheville, NC. Like many others, the pandemic influenced our timing but we are also part of the first wave of US climate migrants. We moved because the wildfires in California were causing smoke that made our lifestyles less enjoyable. Our son had just started walking, and we had 30 days in a row where the air quality was too bad to go outside. Covid made it unsafe to share indoor spaces, so we basically stayed at home and went insane.
At the end of those 30 days we flew to stay with my family in Atlanta for two months. In order to get a break from a very full house (my brother, his wife and their two kids were also staying with my parents) we took a trip up to Asheville to see the leaves change. Three trips later and we had put an offer in on a house in West Asheville! This lot is literally 7x the size of our lot in Oakland, for less money.
We have been here five months, and are now finally feeling settled in. We got a dog, and have been taking her on hikes and to play with other dogs in the neighborhood. We also have been taking our kiddo out canoeing on the nearby lakes, and soon on the river. We know the restaurants, we know the easy places to get out and see nature, and we are starting to turn our kudzu covered lot into a working garden. Our chickens (which we got in June) are now giving us eggs. We have also turned our backyard into a stage and had musicians play!
We are very happy with our relocation, and while we miss the community back in the Bay Area, we don’t miss the smoke. It also seems like people we know from California are headed this way every few months, so the community is growing on this side of the country as well.