A Kentuckian in California

I mean they have these in the BACKYARD!
I went abroad last week, y'all. Or at least it felt like another country.

I went to California.

Now, first let me say, it is not Californians with which I have a problem. Everyone was super sweet and accommodating and generous. Got nothing but love for all the fabulous people I met in California. However...let me share a rundown of observations from the Sunshine State that left me longing for the the bluegrass of Kentucky after only a couple of days.

* The June gloom was a real bummer, even if it did burn off by the afternoon.
* Everything is SO. SO. SO. expensive.
* There is an excessive amount of door locking that had me pretty paranoid by the end of the trip.
* I do not ever in my life want to spend that much time and energy thinking about (much less sitting in) traffic.
* Seriously, $4.15 for a *&%# gallon of gas!
* I'm not sure I want kale to be that large of a part of my diet.
* I do not miss living in an one industry town.
* A plethora of options is at the same time exciting and exhausting.
* Turns out being around a bunch of skinny tan people is not so great for the old self-image.
* Lunch should never cost $30 for ONE person. (Noticing a theme here?)

In full disclosure, there were some nice things. They have SIDEWALKS - a novel concept I know but one Paducah hasn't quite got on to yet. Despite the annoying and pervasive presence of skinny people, it was nice to always have fresh, healthy food options close by. The Coffee Bean is in fact delicious and I got to go to an H&M (Hallelujah!).


My first full day back home I had to go to baby shower. It was about five minutes away (in fairness, everything in Paducah is about five minutes away) and as I rounded a corner and turned onto a highway surrounded by green fields and topped by big, wide open blue sky I found myself taking a deep, slow exhale.

~ Sarah Stewart Holland