Anna's Blog (31)

Superiority Complex

You're home for the holidays. At a neighborhood gathering, someone asks where you live. You say, “New York.” And they say, “City?” When you confirm, you can see on their faces how impressed they are.

And you love it.

You managed to get out of this dinky town and carve out a place for yourself in…


Added by Anna on August 1, 2013 at 1:45pm — 1 Comment

Boredom in the Boroughs

Photo courtesy of Susan Sermoneta

To outsiders and to people who are…


Added by Anna on July 23, 2013 at 9:16pm — 2 Comments

2 Years After Leaving New York

In July, 2010 I wrote a post about Asheville, my new hometown. And recently a reader asked how things were going, so it seems like a good time for an update.

We landed in Asheville in March 2010 - and a lot has happened in nearly 2 years!

Spring 2010
: Justin and I got engaged!

Summer 2010
: We rented a house, planted a garden, learned about…


Added by Anna on February 11, 2012 at 3:49pm — 2 Comments

How to find a new place to live

I've noticed a trend on this site. New people join and write a post that goes, "I'm thinking about leaving the city, and the other towns I'm interested in are A, B, and C. But how do I choose which is the best one for me?"

This is totally a fair question. And it's one of the questions Mari and I were exploring when we started this site in the first place.

But now I realize that there is only one real way to find a new town to call home: You must visit other…


Added by Anna on October 11, 2011 at 11:13pm — 3 Comments

Crying in public

I'm so tickled that someone wrote a piece in the New York Times about crying in public in NYC: Look at Me: I'm Crying, by Melissa Febos. (By the way, this is from a fun series called Townies.)

I cried many times in public - on the street, on the subway... once was shortly after I moved there and a large…


Added by Anna on May 17, 2011 at 6:41pm — 6 Comments

Is there an exodus from NY State?

This article from CBS New York claims there is:

Poll: 1 In 3 Young New Yorkers Plans To Move Out Of State

Added by Anna on May 13, 2011 at 10:06am — 5 Comments

Meet Other Ex-New Yorkers! In Person!

Feeling home-sick for witty banter and cynical attitudes? Tired of taking those expensive flights to The City just to be among actual New Yorkers? Meet them where you live instead!

We've compiled a list of ex-New Yorker groups that get together through Meetup. Whether it's gathering to watch a Jets game or to taste-test the local substitutes for a "New York slice," these groups can help you get your New York fix from the comfort of your own town.… Continue

Added by Anna on October 27, 2010 at 9:00pm — No Comments

My new hometown!

I have to say it happened more quickly than I expected. Sure, it took about 6 months, but I thought it would be years before we'd find a town good enough to call home after 9 years in the best city in the world.

But we did it! And that place is: Asheville, North Carolina.

This may not come as a shock, either to new friends on this web site due to my… Continue

Added by Anna on July 23, 2010 at 3:30pm — 6 Comments

Being Sick in NYC

I drafted the post below about 6 months before I left New York, and for some reason never posted it. But I was reminded of it today, since I have a "summer cold" and am realizing how different the experience of being sick is in NYC vs. elsewhere. Since I now live in Asheville, NC (more on that later!), I'm actually doing today what I dreamed about doing then: laying on my lawn chair in the front yard, sipping my "throat coat" tea, and enjoying the glorious…


Added by Anna on July 10, 2010 at 12:30pm — 1 Comment

I love mountains

About a month ago, we wrapped up our time in Austin. Everyone told us we were crazy to leave when we did - right before SXSW, glorious warm spring weather, and bluebonnets blooming. The problem was we couldn't find an affordable place to rent because of SXSW, and we happened to get a house sitting gig near Asheville, NC (our next planned stop) so the choice was fairly easy.

So in the beginning… Continue

Added by Anna on April 7, 2010 at 12:33pm — 3 Comments

Perpetual Impermanence

Came across this article in the Times today called The Psychology of Moving, and it reminded me of something I've been thinking.

When we decided to do this travel thing, the focus was on the upheaval we would experience, how we would be breaking out of our settled lives in NYC. How would we deal with the lack of permanence?

But once we left, I realized that I had never felt truly… Continue

Added by Anna on March 1, 2010 at 3:21pm — 4 Comments

From World (NYC) Citizen to US Citizen

For Christmas, J and I drove to Atlanta (his hometown) and stayed there for a week. This was the first time we traveled anywhere from our adopted, temporary home of Austin. The whole trip was entirely New York-less, but the city was on my mind the whole time...

1. As any New Yorker will tell you, one of the best things about living in NYC, is leaving NYC from time to time. It can make Ohio or Oregon feel like Disneyland - huge grocery stores! dishwashers! uninterrupted sleep!… Continue

Added by Anna on January 12, 2010 at 5:37pm — 5 Comments

Flat Iron v. Flat-screen: Hosting Visitors Outside of NYC

In Austin, J and I have been living in a guest house next to an old Victorian home. For the last 10 days of November, the family that lives in the big house (our landlords) were out of town, and asked us to house sit. We decided it would be a great opportunity to have some guests, so my parents came down for a few days. They stayed in the guest house while we took over the big house.

(Coincidentally, the owners lived in New York for a few years, so we were surrounded by NYC-related… Continue

Added by Anna on December 4, 2009 at 1:24pm — 3 Comments

3 Weeks After Leaving New York

Two weeks ago, I wrote about my first post-NYC week. Now I've been out of New York for 3 weeks, and thought it might be a good time to update, revisit, take a snapshot, what-have-you...

I'm feeling a little stuck on what to write about because much of the novelty (warm weather! palm trees! so many tacos!) has already worn off. But I also haven't been here long enough to speak to any long-term post-NYC… Continue

Added by Anna on November 18, 2009 at 7:19pm — 4 Comments

Out of my element and frustrated!

I'm so frustrated! I just spent nearly 2 hours running 2 errands and realizing how out of place I feel outside of New York.

Drove to the bank. As I approached it, I saw the drive-through thingy and realized that I have no idea how that works. So I parked and went inside. I've done all my banking at ATMs for so long (since the bank lines in NYC are so insane), that I don't know how to interact with a teller. So, even though I was the only customer in the branch, I made a deposit at… Continue

Added by Anna on November 12, 2009 at 4:30pm — 7 Comments

You can just DO that? Reactions to a year of location shopping

Before we left New York, when we told people (friends, strangers, relatives) our plan to take a year and try out living in a couple different places, they responded in a variety of ways...

1. I wish I could do something like that! But I'm not a very adventurous/spontaneous person...

These are the people who get a faraway look in their eyes, as if they've had this idea themselves, but have… Continue

Added by Anna on November 11, 2009 at 1:11pm — 2 Comments

1 week after leaving NYC

It's been about a week since I left NYC - 4 days of travel and 4 days in Austin. Seems like a good time to do some summarizing.

I'm happy to report that so far... I've survived! There were some flutters of panic early on, but now that we're settling in Austin, I'm feeling really good about the change. And I feel almost guilty when I say it, but: I don't miss NYC at all. As I wrote to a friend this week, "we are eating well, admiring the diverse plant life, and in awe of the comforts… Continue

Added by Anna on November 6, 2009 at 12:26pm — 1 Comment

Walgreens as barometer

In Austin, we're renting a little guest house that's next to this big Victorian house in a lovely, quiet neighborhood just south of downtown Austin. When we arrived Sunday night, the owners weren't home, so we decided to get a bite to eat. Luckily, there's a BBQ joint less than half a block away, so we scarfed down some ribs and drowned our aching roadtrip muscles in beer, while we listened to the band warm up on the patio. It was fantastic. And in such an Austin way.…


Added by Anna on November 5, 2009 at 2:13pm — 1 Comment

I left! And then I panicked, quietly.

So after months of planning, we finally did it! A week ago, we packed up our little blue station wagon and drove out of New York. Saying goodbye to our cozy apartment was a tad emotional; saying goodbye to Brooklyn and Manhattan was, disappointingly, anti-climactic. I felt like there should have been a parade guiding us on our way, or fireworks greeting us when we emerged from the tunnel in Jersey - but alas, there were not. I think such fanfare would have made leaving feel more real, more… Continue

Added by Anna on November 4, 2009 at 12:00pm — 6 Comments

1 Month Left in New York

I can hardly believe I'm saying this, but we leave New York at the end of the month! We've decided to simplify our original plan, and stay in Austin, TX for 5 months (Nov-March) and Asheville, NC for 5 months (March-July). We've found a cute little guesthouse to… Continue

Added by Anna on October 4, 2009 at 11:43pm — 3 Comments

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