In a comment on another post, Tom asked how the return to the East Bay was going. Rather than bury my response in a comment it becomes its own post.
To say it’s going well would be an understatement. The first full weekend I was back I was driving around town running some mundane errands. As I sat there behind the wheel I found myself grinning and giggling because I was so happy to be back. The grinning and giggling phase has passed but I’m still just as pleased to be here.
My apartment, regardless of it’s semi-unpacked state, is great. I’d prefer to be in a part of town where I can walk to shops and cafes, but overall I can’t complain. My favorite feature of this apartment is the laundry room. I now own my very own washer and dryer and it’s bliss. I find myself doing gratuitous laundry. “Aww, that sock is dirty. I should wash it!” Also, despite the fact that I’m live downtown and right next to a major freeway this is still the quietest place I’ve lived since 2000. When I lie down to sleep at night the only sounds that wake me are coming from Moira, not from traffic or drunks idiots walking past screaming.
Where previously I would have my weekends booked by social events, now I have weekends and weekdays. Friends call or write saying something along the lines of, “There’s this place on Alameda we’re gonna try. Want to go?” Not only am I able to say “yes,” I can do so and still get to bed at a reasonable hour. Going out so often is part of the reason I’m not done unpacking yet.
Oakland is much much closer to Palo Alto. This has made it a lot easier to meet up with the Albertellis. Now we can actually do things in the evenings during the week. The proximity is going to almost guarantee that knitting and board gaming groups will be formed shortly.
The first couple of days here were a little rough for Moira, but she settled in very well after that. The vast majority of her time is spent sleeping on her pillow on the bed. I think she became a total convert to the new apartment when she discovered that central heating means cat-friendly heating vents in the floor. When she’s not on her pillow or next to me on the couch she can usually be found lying in front of the vent in the bedroom, a puddle of warm melted cat.
My commute, which you’d think would suck rocks since I now live twice as far from the office, takes almost the same amount of time as it did before. Yes, that’s how bad the traffic is on 101-S. Previously the drive was more of a crawl, with speeds rarely exceeding 45mph. It’s now a reverse commute so aside from minor backups at the bridge and in San Rafael I can just cruise on through to the office. The homeward commute takes a bit longer than before, which I’ve unfortunately been using as an excuse to skip the gym after work. Thankfully there’s a new branch of my gym near the office so I’ve been making that up during my lunch hours instead.
Petaluma was great. It’s a fabulous little town. I really loved my apartment there, especially the kitchen. But I’m very glad I finally followed through on the decision to move back to Oakland. Things just feel more right here.