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Tell Us About Where You Live!

Do you like where you currently live?

  • Yes; I absolutely love it!

    Votes: 1 3.6%
  • Yes; it’s pretty nice.

    Votes: 9 32.1%
  • I don’t really feel one way or the other.

    Votes: 6 21.4%
  • No; I’d prefer to live elsewhere if I could.

    Votes: 10 35.7%
  • No; I absolutely hate it!

    Votes: 2 7.1%

  • Total voters
    28
Joined
Apr 2, 2016
Messages
1,707
Reaction score
2,186
Pronouns
  1. They/Them
Bulbagarden is an international community with people from all sorts of places, all with their own unique cultures and customs. It goes without saying, meanwhile, that people from outside of where you live might have, well… interesting ideas about it, some of which might be based on truth and some of which might be based on myths. Perhaps you have something to say about that as someone who actually lives there — whether that “there” is a country, a city, a region, or anywhere — or maybe you might even some special opinions of your own? This thread is intended to be a place for you to share those thoughts! What’s it really like to be where you live, and how does your experience contrast with what some people might think life is like there? Do you like living where you live? Would you stay if you could help it, or have you been thinking about moving somewhere else for one reason or another? And what advice would you give anyone who wants to visit where you live, or possibly even move there? Discuss!

(Also feel free to participate in the poll above! Or not; it’s up to you! Your results can be changed later if you have a change of heart somewhere down the line.)
 
I live in troy, missouri, and let me tell you, the weather here is crazy. It can be warm and sunny one day, and be raining cats and dogs the next. My dad told me that michigan, the state where he used to live in, has crazy weather, too. I wish I could move to ohio someday. Memes aside, I think ohio seems like a pretty decent state to live in. My sister's been to ohio before, and she told me that ohio was similar to texas, and we used to live in texas until we moved to missouri seven years ago.
 
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I currently live in Oklahoma, and TBH, I struggled between choosing "No, I'd prefer to live somewhere else" and "No; I absolutely hate it!" In reality, I feel more the latter, but I went with the former because it is still the US and I do live in a large suburban town that is very safe from general crime. In terms of the US, though, it is toward the very bottom perhaps only with Texas and Florida being worse.

To put it simply: I hate the politics, I hate the hyper-Christian nature, and I hate the climate.

More in depth:

I'm a leftist, I'm a woman, I'm bisexual (leaning heavily lesbian), I'm non-religious. The Oklahoma government is hostile to every category. Reproductive freedoms are gone, Christianity is being intertwined with government (despite that being blatantly unconstitutional). Recently, the government approved the first Christian charter school in the entire country, meaning my tax payer funds are now going to a discriminatory religious school that I don't believe in. Plus, LGBT rights are being targeted. So far trans people have gotten the worse, and I feel very disgusted with what the government is doing to them, especially the youth. Once the Supreme Court strikes down Obergefell, I know that same-sex marriage will be struck down in Oklahoma immediately, just like abortion was. Which effects me very much because I lean lesbian.

Also, public education is under attack, we have always been toward the very bottom of the list, but the radicals are trying to take us down even further, they even want to "defund" public education. LGBT kids can not be respected in schools anymore. A teacher friend in band told me that they can not even refer to trans kids by the right pronouns in classrooms. Absolutely disgusting. What an evil policy. Evil people control the government through and through. I have had it.

The hyper-Christian nature has already been explained in how it is taking over the government. Oklahoma is home to a university that teaches televangelists how to scam people through the prosperity gospel scam. Many, many big name televangelists have attended that university. These televangelists are not only scam artists, but they're also a HUGE part as to why the right is the way it is today. They have meshed religious beliefs with right wing ideologies so much now that abortion, which was never a religious belief before, is now somehow a religious belief. Plus, they worship Trump. I can't even with Trump. He is a disgusting predator, criminal, and straight-up fascist. I can not stand living in a state that voted for him. I cannot.

The climate? Well, perhaps because of medications I'm on, but I have become extra-sensitive to heat. It's to the point where the 70s are too warm for me, especially with sun. If the sun is out it's going to be too hot for me, perhaps even in the 60s under the wrong conditions (no wind, humid). Oklahoma has been hit hard by global warming. Winters are much milder than they were as a child. 60s and 70s are now a regular occurrence in winter. Now imagine that with what I said before. If even winter can get too warm for me, then I'm in trouble. Because every other season is much, much warmer/hotter. When it gets really hot, then I can hardly even breathe when outside or in a car.

It's not just that, though, it's also the severe weather. I panic every time there is a tornado warning. Oklahoma is not known for basements, so the best I can do is go to the bathroom in the middle of the house to take shelter and it's extremely frightening. Spring is such a scary time to me, I have come to dread and despise Spring while everyone else loves it. It's not fun, let me tell you.

---

So, yeah, I don't have a positive view of this place. I think the only thing it has going for it the safety of where I live. But even that is nullified when the government itself is not safe, the weather is not safe, and the people around are hostile to minorities. One thing I will say good about the place is public education in regards to music. I was privileged to grow up in a high-quality band program. A nationally competing one, even. It has shaped my love for music and wind instruments more than I can even speak of.

It's for all of these reasons that I am currently in the process of researching moving. My target state right now is Connecticut. In August, we'll be taking a trip there and hopefully getting started with the actual moving process.
 
Greece. Do not even get me started on politics, corruption, economy, minority rights, urban landscape... It is a difficult country to live in. Not as much as developing countries of course, but compared to US UK Canada and most of the rest of EU... Bad.

The good things are the weather, the culture, the natural landscape, the food and some of the people. Not everyone is really hospitable, not all families are ideal, gossip runs rampant... But there is a good sense of family and local community in lots of people, we have each other's back. There is little government trust, so we have to support each other.
 
I live in the north of The Netherlands. The area/province I live in is considered the countryside, but I don't notice that much since I live in a moderately sized city. Although I only have to drive about 10 minutes to see farmlands as far as the eye can see in every direction. I was born here and I've lived here all my life, and I still really like it here. It's very different from Amsterdam and the area most foreigners would know as Holland. There's barely any tourists here, it's sparsely populated and it's very quiet and calm. The air is also really clean here (I believe I heard somewhere that my city has the cleanest air in all of The Netherlands).

Nature is very close by, which is something I also really like. If I drive 30 minutes to the west, there's the sea and a pretty harbor town with access to the Dutch islands. If I drive 30 minutes to the south, there's a beautiful and large forest I can walk in for hours. There's a recreational area with lakes and beaches even closer by (about 20 minutes by bike). The weather is so-so here but I don't think it's all that out of the ordinary. It's relatively far up north, so the winters tend to be pretty cold (definitely colder than the rest of the country), but the summers are also very hot all the same.

Sure The Netherlands has its issues too, but compared to other parts of Europe it's good living here, especially in the area I live. The only problem I currently have, is that it's hard to find a job that suits me. The fact is just that since it's the outskirts of the country, there's less opportunities and interesting applications to find here. With that in mind, I am actually slightly considering moving to another city that has better and more diverse job opportunities. But on the other hand it really feels like home here, and there's a lot of upsides to living in a more quiet and sparsely populated area.
 
I have. Mixed feelings about it. It's a nice small town, and as someone who doesn't do great in places with lots of noise and people (I have to keep headphones on whenever I have to go to the cities or I get completely overwhelmed), that's really really good for me. Minnesota is a relatively safe state compared to a lot of others in the current political landscape, so that's also a significant plus for me. All of that said. I do NOT do well in cold weather, and we get at least a couple days a year that reach -50 F (or at least do accounting for windchill) which fucking sucks. Also, with small towns for me, it's a bit of a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" because as nice as it is to not be constantly surrounded by people, there's nothing out here. I couldn't even get my COVID shots without going to a different town. Also, while Minnesota is statewide pretty good on the whole political mess. Small towns are famously not; it's still not uncommon to see someone with a "Trump 2020" sign out here, which is uh. Not making me feel safe out here as a queer person.
 
I live in New York City, I was born and raised here and have never lived anywhere else.

...Honestly, with each year that goes by, I seem to get more and more sick of it. There's nothing wrong with the city itself, and I think it's a great place to visit, but I'm just so exhausted with living here. Everything from necessities to housing is ridiculously overpriced, and everywhere you go is cramped, crowded, and noisy. Public transportation is not as great as it sounds; the subway system is confusing and actually inconvenient far more often than not, and from a sensory standpoint I still find the experience really overwhelming and uncomfortable. I don't have a car, and people who don't live here always tell me they're envious that I don't need one to get around, but I'm not physically equipped to walk long distances and climb lots of stairs any time I want to go somewhere either. There's so much light pollution that I can't even see any stars at night. It's all really tiring for me.

I can't help feeling like I must sound deeply ungrateful when I say I don't like living here, especially when I know so many people wish they could, but it's not really like I ever had any choice in the matter. My parents want me to stay in the city too, but I fail to see how that's even possible with how expensive it is now. I would feel so much better in a small, quiet, spread out place, without so many people and skyscrapers around. Personally, living somewhere unexciting and "boring" has always sounded like something I would enjoy... because, well, I'm a "boring" kind of person, lol.

On the other hand, the bitter cold weather is ideal for me, and I'm attached to the northeast in general — so when I move, I probably won't go far. Probably NJ, since it's right there anyway, or maybe somewhere in New England if that somehow doesn't work out.
 
I live in Finland, as my username suggests. Specifically, I live in Helsinki, the country's capital, in a one-person apartment. Everything it cozy, there are many shops within walking or driving distance (I don't drive, I use public transportation), so I don't have to go far for any basic or even slightly less basic necessities. There's plenty of sights to see, the weather doesn't go into extremes almost ever, there's no natural disasters, and Finland is known as one of the happiest, environmentally friendly, and least corrupted countries for a reason. You can get into short friendly talks with complete strangers while you're on a walk or using public transportation. Overall, I love Finland, and I wouldn't dream of living anywhere else.
 
Public transportation is not as great as it sounds; the subway system is confusing and actually inconvenient far more often than not, and from a sensory standpoint I still find the experience really overwhelming and uncomfortable. I don't have a car, and people who don't live here always tell me they're envious that I don't need one to get around, but I'm not physically equipped to walk long distances and climb lots of stairs any time I want to go somewhere either. There's so much light pollution that I can't even see any stars at night. It's all really tiring for me.

I appreciate you sharing this. I also can't drive (which is a huge limiting factor on me where I live), and I have a limit on how far and long I can walk thanks to arthritis. I've always looked at cities like NYC or Washington D.C. (which I have visited and rode on the Metro years ago) as a dream for me with my conditions.

It's disheartening to hear that it still has a lot of problems and would be hard for me as it is for you. =(

The massive expense of those cities has led me to aim for a place that won't be much better than where I live in this regard (I'm moving to Connecticut most likely, but not in the SW portion that would have stout public transportation as it is so close to NYC).

It's really unfortunate that nowhere I move will make not being able to drive much better. It is so important. And even if I do end up somewhere better, unfortunately, I'm scared of public transportation as a woman, and would have to get used to it. I do plan on using trains in Connecticut to get access to the beach, NYC and Boston.
 
@Orchid
Oh my goodness; we’re city twinsies! I had no idea that you live in New York City! I no longer do, but I did for quite a long time when I was younger. It’s enough that that signature sea-sewer smell that the city is covered in (Manhattan especially) is actually nostalgic for me, haha. You don’t have to feel ungrateful for saying that you don’t like the place that much anyone, though; I totally understand. New York is a tough city, and I was quite naïve to it all before I learned more about the inner workings of the place and how expensive it is to live there (and indeed, the public transportation experience leaves much to be desired). It’s indeed a wonderful place to visit, and if you’re a child who’s shielded from all of the less-than-great things about the city, it’s a wonderful place to explore growing up. But it’s unlikely that I’ll ever actually live there again, and I think that’s fine. Everything has its time and place in life.

And speaking of that, I’ve also been having mixed feelings about where I currently live now (I won’t disclose where, but it is a major metropolitan area with all of the trappings you’d expect from that; I always seem to gravitate towards cities for some reason, haha). Not necessarily because I dislike the place, because I actually really do like it. Rather, my reasons are more related to what @Aulos talked about, namely that America seems to be going down the drain fast for anyone who’s not a straight, cis, abled, neurotypical, Protestant, well-off white male. And as someone who fits outside of more than a few of those categories and just as a halfway decent human being, really, that scares me, disgusts me, and above all disappoints me, that we’ve gotten to this most miserable point in this once-great (or at least once-promising) experiment of ours. And that’s before we even get to the multiple mass shootings a day, the elusiveness of reliable and affordable healthcare in a world where almost literally everyone else has gotten universal healthcare figured out, and other things that I can’t even remember, they’re so many.

It’s to the point, then, that I’ve been seriously considering leaving the US itself — fleeing it, basically — and moving to a whole new country altogether.

That… is a tall order for me, obviously, for more reasons than one. I have basically no money right now, as well as no stable source of income, all thanks to the “stuff” that I’ve been going through. I’ve become strong enough that I can just barely function and actually seriously make viable plans for things now, but with the position that I’m currently in, I’d basically be starting from zero. That said, building myself up enough to pull off such an epic, life-changing move — probably the biggest one I’d ever make in my life up to that point — isn’t quite as far-fetched as it might seem for someone with almost no dollars to their name. You see, I happen to be in a position where, if I were to get a decently-paying job, I can sit around in my relatives’ house and save stacks upon stacks of money without having to pay for rent or any other extreme bills. I actually used that very strategy not too long ago to be able to afford my first apartment, which I wouldn’t have been able to do otherwise. Money was never really a problem after that, and I was very fortunate to have things line up perfectly enough that my otherwise low-paying job allowed me to telework during the pandemic and begin to plot what would’ve been my future; only my “stuff” ending up stopping me with all of that. So in order words, I’ve done all of this once before and I can do it again. And this time, I won’t sell myself short and allow myself to have an underpaying job that I’m massively overqualified for; I have a degree and I plan to milk it for all it’s worth. And even without that in play, I’m a fairly resourceful person with a lot of useful skills, and people have said that I’m a smart person, so there’s that (I believe it, but I don’t like to feel like I’m a narcissist by thinking about that too much, and I have plenty of weaknesses as a person to bring me down a peg or two besides). The only problem is actually convincing people that I’m smart, useful, and resourceful and past failures have brought down my confidence a lot with that. That said…

…this is something that I can’t feel down about; that I can’t back down on; and that I won’t back down on. The more I think about this, the more inevitable it seems, that I’m going to take that step. Because also, it’s not just America that I’m “fleeing”. Unfortunately, it’s also my own family that I’m planning on separating myself from. More than anything outside, the single greatest threat to my safety and emotional-mental well-being is those who are closest to me, who have taken the inch that I’ve given them in my desperation to escape the black hole of my “stuff”, and then taken a mile and the whole damn highway and then some. Or if you’re a cat person: I showed them my belly, and they punched me right in the gut, over and over. Ouch. But I’m going to put my foot down now, and put myself first. It’s inevitable. My patience and tolerance for nonsense has long since been spent, and I will indeed go to another damn country if that’s what it takes for me to get as far from their orbit as possible. Blood does not always equal family, sadly.

So that’s that, I guess. But where would I even move to? Well, either Canada or the UK have been looking mighty nice compared to the worst of what the US has to offer lately, and nowadays I’ve been leaning heavily towards the latter. They have their own problems going on right now (including, perhaps most immediately pertinently for me, a very, very bad rental crisis, and both the government and the monarchy seem to be trying to outdo the US in the soap opera stakes versus, you know, doing their jobs), but universal health care and a lack of gun violence alone are promising prospects compared to the US regardless. I know that they say that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side — and I’ve been kind of wary of that fact — but when the “grass” that you’re used to is actually mud that threatens to trap you and consume you whole like quicksand, you take however much more green you can get. If nothing else, it’ll be quite the adventure, and adventure is always something that the wanderluster in me can look forward to. I just hope that I can find the strength and hustle within me to make it all happen.
 
Born in Sochi, Russia, then moved to NYC where I spent most of my life (first in Brooklyn and then in Staten Island), now I live in Perth, Australia. West Australia is pretty nice and has some lovely scenery when you venture out as well as good beaches, but it's not really somewhere I personally can see myself living longterm. It's more enjoyable for people who enjoy swimming, hiking, and other active outdoor activities and sadly that's not me - it's also really hot in the warmer seasons, too hot for my liking. Generally quite isolated from other parts of the world as well.

I did enjoy NYC when living there but would also prefer not to go back to America as a whole for many reasons. And affording an apartment in a city like that is super tough lol, I was single and living with family at the time so it was stuffy and I never got to experience solo life there. Don't get me wrong it's quite expensive here in WA too now, prices have gone up so much it's crazy, but I'm married now and we're decently well off together so it's nice to be able to live away from our parents.

Honestly, I'm not sure where I'd want to live, but if it were anywhere in Australia then I 100% prefer the eastern side. I'd be interested in trying to live somewhere in Europe, Japan, Singapore, or some other places, but I can't say for certain since I've either never been there at all or never been there for more than a few weeks. Melbourne, Australia also seems like a neat place that's as close to NYC as I may be able to get here without having to make the move back to the US (last resort for me).
 
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Probably one of my longer posts I've made on the forums.

And now the perspective from the west coast.

Grew up and currently live in Northern California, specifically in the Southern Bay Area.

It's interesting to see how this place went from a relatively mid-size, temperate, slight expensive part of the world to a large, temperate, one of the most expensive places in the world. While growing up, I would see lots of fields and a fair bit of abandoned of canning facilities that are now converted to large, cookie cutter style townhouses, mid-rise apartment complexes or large corporate companies that should have instead be in office towers in Downtown.

I think what has mainly changed really is that this people don't want to accept changes and instead, have their own interpretation of "the good ol' days" while trying to reap all the economic benefits of growth. Them denying that growth is happening and that it needs to be accommodated has led to some of the biggest problems within the Bay Area.

A prominent example of this is these people who complain about homelessness are the same people who would block new housing development! And a lot the times, where the developers want to put new housing or apartments aren't even in the neighborhoods that these "protesters" or "preservationists" live in. They are the same people who complain about "raising crime," "increased homeless," "higher taxes," "too much traffic," etc.

Of course, a lot of the time, they are also landlords who managed to buy up properties when it was cheap. And they have an incentive to really overcharge rent or even housing prices here as a result of them limiting housing supply. A house that would have cost $350k normally would end up costing $2-3 million! Or in terms of rent, if rent would otherwise be $750/month, they can charge $3,000/month!

And because of how California property taxes works, they would only pay property taxes based on much they bought the house for. So for example, if someone bought a very big house house for $300,000, even though the house on the market today would $5 million, they would only pay $3,000/year in property taxes, not $50,000/year. What's even more sickening is that if I were to buy a small, townhouse for lets say $1.5 million, I would have to pay $15,000/year in property taxes.

So yeah, I have a huge problem with those landlords, NIMBYs for blocking and canceling new housing projects because increased supply = more competition = less they have to rent/sell their living spaces. What intended to be good laws to keep property taxes affordable and to save the environment has ended up being heavily abused for selfish reasons.

tl;dr about the rant: high and overpriced rents and not much is being about it. Sadly, there were good intentions behind it.

Honestly, aside from growth issues not being done and this place being more expensive than it should be, I think I learned to make peace with where I am now and don't see myself even wanting to move for the foreseeable future. I'm sure there are nicer places that are cheaper within the US. However, even if I want to leave my family behind, it would mean leaving a place where I have the biggest opportunities career wise.

And I'm not just talking about in terms of being able to make and save a lot of money (although that is a huge factor), I'm talking about just being able to access a wealth of jobs without having to uproot my whole life and be surrounded by some of the smartest and most supportive people in my professional career. For example, I lost my job a few months back and now, I got job at another large company that pays me about 50% more. And actually, before I had last my job, I lost my job before and again, I found a job relatively easy with higher pay with awesome coworkers and manager. And like I said, I got to learn and work with some of the brightest people and that are able to support each other goals and when things go down. Honestly, having such opportunities is worth the extra money I would have to spend in state taxes.

And I think the biggest contribution as to why I'm able to make peace with this place is that my mom owns the house here and I don't have to pay the sky high rents here and that she gets to pass along her low property taxes to me later on in life. Honestly, that gives me piece of mind and as state earlier, be in a place where I can grow my career, earn lots of money and be surrounded by smart people.

There's also the diversity of businesses and lots of those businesses. For example, in my neighborhood alone not only there's a Walmart, Target and some of the typical American stores, there are also quite of few Asian market chains, lots of boba shops, mom-and-pop ethnic restaurants and supply stores, more than few fresh bakeries, and so on. And they are not in some sort of power center but instead spread all over the block in my neighborhood. And this is very typical in my part of the Bay Area and in the Bay Area (and urban California) in general.

I think the diversity of businesses represents the the diversity as well as the tolerance of the general population. In addition to cross-cultural interaction that eventually leaves to mutual understanding, I think there's also high degree of tolerance and acceptance of LGBT, "misfits," and basically anyone who doesn't do active harm that are otherwise contrarian. That's probably one of the main reason why the Bay Area and California is by and far the largest economy in the country and 4th largest in the world.

There's the climate also, which as I already mentioned means I don't have to worry too much about being too hot or too cold.

I really do wish we are able to solve our growth problem as we can attract even more intelligent and more "contrarian" people, if not out of kindness of our hearts, for our benefit. As the data shows, we have the largest economy by far in the US and I believe that is something that can be sustained. The second largest economy in the US is not even close to California's scale and that state's economy is mainly being propped up by the oil and gas industries.

Aside from the higher rent prices, my gripe is with the federal government who takes at least three times more in US taxes and have the nerve to say that my state income taxes are higher than it should be. Then again, I also noticed that the mountain west and west coast states hate the federal government too.

Hell, my closest online friends who I knew for many years decided to make the move from their state to California despite the higher prices. They were able to find decent jobs thanks to the high economic opportunities and they don't feel threatened by the locals or the state government. They could focus more on being productive citizens, bringing in the expertise and skills, contributing to the economy, paying taxes, enjoying what the Bay Area and California has to offer and grow their skill sets.

And what has helped me made peace where I live despite the down side was my road trip across the US. A couple things that I learned is that the grass ain't really that much greener with what I have and that talking to others across the country, many would kill to be in the position that I'm in. I have locals in their respective areas tell me that how lucky I am to be given amazing gift. Honestly, before that road trip, I was jaded about where I currently live and thought I wanted a complete change in my life. What I really needed is only a temporary change in life but want to go back. And honestly, I'm glad I took that road trip because I have heard many stories where people sold their houses here, thinking that the grass was greener somewhere else only to find out it wasn't. And now, those people can't afford to get it back.

Alright, that's enough about my thoughts. Overall, I think I learned to make peace where I live and I have no plans in leaving for the foreseeable future. And I'm definitely not gonna cash in what I have just so I have a bigger house or to "pay less in taxes." While where I live have growth problems, in addition to complaining about it, I'm also getting involved in being part of the solution. I'm doing what I can to educate others to get behind housing projects, building infrastructure (whether it's through better roads or better mass transit) so that more people can come here and contribute what they have. The diversity of things to do, tolerance of many different perspectives and the climate has been the huge draw that makes me want to stay for the long term.

I will be more than happy to answer questions or elaborate anything that is unclear.
 
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living near the beach in a city that's infamous for being a tourist trap. It lacks a lot of things I'd find wonderful, but the nearby towns and cities do in fact, have whatever I'm looking for (often times, better). As I live in one of those high rise apartment buildings, there's a lot of land, people and buildings I get to spectate, but unfortunately is also terrible, because I do not like waiting more than 30 seconds to go up and down an elevator! I don't really have much to say about where I live, and I don't really want to explicitly reveal it, but it HAS been adapted as a place in pokemon. It's pretty crowded here, and every time i shop, whether my money or not, I always somehow feel like it might end up draining it all down the drain.
 
i live in suburban new jersey, and let me tell you: there is absolutely nothing to do here. i wanna get out of here and move anywhere else. nyc seems promising.
As someone who’s lived in New York City before, things might not seem so promising once you start looking at the rent and expenses, haha. And as someone who’s seen how green the grass can be on the other side, so to speak, in the suburbs, I wouldn’t hate on said suburbs quite so quickly if I were you! You’ll appreciate the boredom after spending some time hustling in the big city, at least for a little while. I’d recommend visiting, if I were you, and leaving it at that, unless you become a doctor or an attorney or win the lottery or something. (And even then, I’d recommend elsewhere, haha.)
 
OK, so a while ago in the BCCT when we were discussing plans for the week, I did write about how Greek Easter is like, copypasting here:
Greek Orthodox Easter... Basically two major feasts.

First is the dinner at about 0:20am on Sunday (but all the preparations are done on Saturday evening, then we go to church at about 11:40pm, the bells and "Christ has risen" happens at exactly midnight). The main dish here is "magiritsa" aka lamb innards soup, but since it is gross we usually have some other meat too (it has to be meat because it supposedly breaks the fast even though we do not observe it. It also has to not be too much because the next one is worse).

Then we go to bed (with a full stomach that late yeah it is kinda terrible). We actually make a point not too eat too much on all of Saturday and the first feast (not for observing the fast, but because it really has to be done for any hope to survive the mess that comes next).

The folllowing morning is the barbecue, which takes HOURS. The 3 dishes are all on a "souvla" each. Giant metal skewers spinning (thankfully with motors, in our grandparents' days it was done manually and 3 people were needed at any moment, and shifts, good luck with that) for HOURS above coal for slow grilling. "Kokoretsi" (lamb innards wrapped by intenstines, still gross but way tastier than the soup) "kontosouvli" (pork pieces, essentially a giant souvlaki) and an entire lamb without the innards. There is also lots of snacking on fries cheese etc. while waiting. And wine. Some "drunkles" are smashed long before we actually sit at the table (almost afternoon). We attempt to eat as much as possible (and never succeed) and drink more (I really try avoiding it but most don't).

Then we are even more bloated and full. There is even a totally unofficial third feast Sunday night or Monday lunch where we just gotta get rid of the leftovers (which is even more gross cold).

... Yikes this all might seem very barbarian to the average non-Mediterranean. Even I cringed a little just writing about it. But pretty much everyone who is not vegetarian or vegan does it in Greece as a tradition. It is one of the few times we really fit the "loud Greek eaters" stereotype.

Just a little bit earlier, in the "What song are you currently listening to?" thread I started posting the actual songs I am listening to (or better put, the official music videos for those, since what I actually am listening is a live show that peforms them SUPER LOUDLY so they can be heard all the way from the primary school courtyard/location of the festivities, straight to home). Of course they all are Greek and from a very specific genre called πανηγυρτζίδικα (pah-nee-year-GEE-thee-ka). And someone asked what this festival etc. is all about and it is somewhat hard to explain with a very short TL;DR, so here goes.

A Greek πανηγύρι (pah-nee-YEAR-ree) is a festival that honors a specific Orthodox saint that is (sometimes) the protector of the village, held on the eve of the actual day. But there is a major caveat to this: the day MUST be within the timeframe from St. George's Day to St. Demetrius' Day, the church calendar's "festive" phase. The latter is always October 26th, so all good there. The former, however, is usually April 23rd, but if Orthodox Easter is after April 22nd, it is instead moved to the Monday after Easter, for the obvious reason that the festive phase cannot include the days exactly before Easter. In practice, this means that all these festivals have to be around summer, it is actually convenient in terms of weather too, so if a village has a protector saint whose day is NOT within the timeframe, they had to build a second little church on the name of one who is, and do the festival for that one. But then other villages who had like May or Septrmber dates kinda did not like those (not as good to attract tourists) so they used that rule to build a second church and name it in honor of whatever saint is convenient, often after discussion with other local villages so there is not too much overlap (again not the best for tourists). Especially since many churches are after Mary and not everyone wants to have all the festivals exactly on August 14th. In practice, the dates each village chooses are completely arbitrary. The Church kind of does not like this at all, so the solution was to move most festivities away from the church, so it is not actually a religious festival at all anymore, and local councils or culture associations take it upon themselves to host, usually on each village's primary school courtyard (with municipal permit), since most villages do not have some better venue that is open-air, closed off for security and better checking of tickets, and just big enough (the main square tends to be smaller). Which in practice adds the rule that it has to be during school's summer break for convenience (no one can clean up in time if kids are coming the next few days), so even more villages had to abandon their original protector saints, which annoyed church more, so even less priests are actually present at the start ceremony, and the vicious cycle JUST KEEPS GOING!

So in the end this is just an excuse for each village to host Greek traditional festivals with lots of Easter-like food (but usually pork instead of lamb), live music shows, and traditional dance, based on what the elders actually did at the time to honor saints and just have fun (they had much less options at the time, and it was once per year, so it was a big deal, still is for like the 90-year-olds of my extended family and probably no one else), except most younger locals do not necessarily like it anymore or listen to this kind of music any other time of the year and only are either kinda forced to go because of families and to "build community" or go "just because it is tradition", but the REAL reason this is all happening is to attract tourists who are like "woo traditional Greek festivals, summer fun like they did in the old days", and, well, make money. Everything for the money :)

TL;DR we do not actually celebrate something specific, each village just selects a date and hosts it for the sake of it. Which sounds like a bit of silly explanation without the context.
 
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A question for everyone! Perhaps kind of a weird one, but…

…does your access, or lack thereof, to public transportation affect your impression of where you live? I ask this because for the longest time, I can say that I’ve been kind of a city person, haha, and yet I’ve also spent a lot of time in the suburbs where pretty much all transportation is done by car due to the lack of mass transit in the particular place that I’ve been. I don’t have a car, and I’ve never learned to drive anyway — with the idea of moving a giant metal deathtrap at double digit miles per hour frightening the hell out of me having a lot to do with that — so I pretty much rely on either public transportation or other people driving me places even if I don’t necessarily enjoy either of those things. Even so, though, I do kind of have a small fondness for the former — in a kind of naïve child-like way — due to my experiences at various cities that I’ve either been or lived at in the past, and also because of my everlasting wanderlust, haha.
 
A question for everyone! Perhaps kind of a weird one, but…

…does your access, or lack thereof, to public transportation affect your impression of where you live? I ask this because for the longest time, I can say that I’ve been kind of a city person, haha, and yet I’ve also spent a lot of time in the suburbs where pretty much all transportation is done by car due to the lack of mass transit in the particular place that I’ve been. I don’t have a car, and I’ve never learned to drive anyway — with the idea of moving a giant metal deathtrap at double digit miles per hour frightening the hell out of me having a lot to do with that — so I pretty much rely on either public transportation or other people driving me places even if I don’t necessarily enjoy either of those things. Even so, though, I do kind of have a small fondness for the former — in a kind of naïve child-like way — due to my experiences at various cities that I’ve either been or lived at in the past, and also because of my everlasting wanderlust, haha.
Of course! As I say here, I still do not have a driver's license and live in a rural area, that makes me dislike it a bit more than if I could drive. Thankfully it is still manageable with bus and walking and occasionally getting rides from relatives/friends.

Honestly, I do not care too much about exactly where I live anymore. As long as the cost of living is somewhat sustainable (my current job is work from home and all on a deadline so no problem with that for now), as long as I do have a stable Internet connection of course. And ideally not too extreme weather. Still feel like I could live almost anywhere, although being way too isolated could make me freak out just a little, based on experiences from vacation.
 
i voted for the middle option not because i have no strong feelings but because i have both strong positive and strong negative feelings
on one hand, it's a quiet and calm community where you get lots of personal space and privacy, and it's not very expensive to live around here either (of course, i'm not an adult so i'm not the one paying, but in a few years it's something to keep in mind), but it's also notoriously xenophobic (rural midwest yay!!) and very... rednecky. lots of drugs too. so pretty firmly mixed
 
its mid af Im moving in 2025 so I look forward to getting out of here. The city aint big the attractions are so simplified and easy as hell to get use to and the people just seem to be the same old
 
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