I flitted around our pretty South Florida condo, throwing together some quick pasta for supper. Though we had actually purchased a dining room table and chairs (– how grown up of us!), it was far more likely we’d be eating our meal sitting on the black leather couch. Please tell me we’re not the only couple who frequently ate our meals on the sofa before we had children? Anyway, I was so excited to tell my husband what I’d learned.
“Guess what?” I asked him, shoving a plate of angelhair in his direction.
“What?” he smiled back. My sudden enthusiasm wasn’t exactly a new thing to him.
“I found out the town we should live in. It’s in Virginia!” I shoved a mouthful of noodles in and watched for his reaction. He was clearly waiting for me to elaborate.
“See, I had this customer, Mr. Goldman, and I had to do a cashier’s check for him– did you know that for checks over ten million, I’m STILL one of the signing authorities???– anyway, I was doing his check and I mentioned how we were thinking about moving. I told him whereabouts we were considering and he was telling me that his son and his wife just moved up there and they did a ton of research and found a great town!”
By now, obviously, he was waiting to hear the name of this amazing town that, of course, we knew nothing about, really. I was taking all of this second- or third-hand, really, but, to be truthful, it was our first read “lead” as we tried to explore the area.
“It’s called Chesapeake,” I told him, “and it’s in the southeast corner, near Virginia Beach and, also, North Carolina. Not ON the beach, really, but not at all far.”
His interest was piqued, too, since it sounded like it might be just the right climate for us. I went on,
“Apparently, it has really great schools!”
While we didn’t have children at the time, that was super important to us. After all, one of the reasons we were leaving Florida is that, at the time, the schools in our area were not well-funded. Though the Boca Raton area is incredibly wealthy, many of those snowbirds were paying the bulk of their tax money to Northeastern states. This is just how it was. And, so, it was great news to hear about the quality schools.
I was so excited. I had felt so lost trying to figure where we should go and now I felt like I actually had an idea. Somewhere to start. It felt like a step forward.
Now, if you were to know my husband and me well, here’s something you would learn– I talk to people and find out everyone under the sun’s opinion; my husband, on the other hand, researches reviews and specs online for hours. The idea of reading reviews for five hours makes me want to weep. The idea of having to actually talk to people and listen to their stories makes my husband cringe. Honestly, we make a good pair precisely because of those differences.
I provided the name of a town. He got to work.
He learned that Chesapeake was tucked right between Virginia Beach and Norfolk. He learned that, yes, there were good schools, particularly one specific district. He learned that our company had a regional office in that area and several banking centers scattered amid those three main towns. He learned that the weather did, indeed, look just about perfect for what we were seeking.
Honestly, we pretty much just went with it. We really only had one other thing to figure out, far as we could see– would we be able to get jobs there?
We decided to find out…
The rest of this story can be found here:
Part 1: Itchy Feet
Part 2: Looking Northward