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Saturday, December 1, 2018

Accidents of Birth



Most of us grow up attached to the part of the world we are raised in. No matter the conditions, it's home. Then some folks become adults, take a look around the world, and decide there are better places to live.

Here's one example close to home. Growing up, my niece never lived north of Georgia. During most of her life she lived in northern Florida. At age twenty-five she decided life might be better for her up here in New Hampshire. She made the move. It hasn't always been easy for her, but in the five years she's lived here, I've never heard her complain about the cold. Turn out she really hated heat and humidity.
She's lucky in that she had family here to help with the transition, but it was still a bold move. She was also at a point in her life where she wanted to experience something totally different.

One thing about being born in the United States, we are a huge country with just about every environment imaginable. There are also vast cultural differences from region to region. An individual can drastically change their way of life without needing a passport or learning a new language. Even with the relative ease of changing regions in the United States, most people stay close to where they were born.

In fact, people are now less likely to move then they were years ago. At one time it was pretty common for people to move for their career. That's less likely today. Even within economically depressed parts of the country, folks tend to stay close to home. While the financial opportunities may be somewhat better elsewhere, family and friend connections are more important. There are other factors at play too, such as a deep attachment to the land and the way of life. A person who grew up on the coast may find it difficult to adapt to the mountains of Colorado.

From a prepper perspective, it's a darn good idea to really give your home area a good dispassionate examination. Are you really living in a good place? Just because you were born on the slope of a volcano doesn't mean you have to stay there. Maybe you shouldn't live on a flood plane just because your ancestors always did. Perhaps -30 weather really isn't your thing. Even more basic, a rural life might suite better than a city one.

There are few things so basic to survival and safety than where one lives. Even though that's the case, only a tiny percentage of people voluntarily pull up stakes and move. Now sometimes there's no choice. If a drought dries up your farmland and the wind blows it away, you've got a lot of pressure to move. It takes a special person to look around and think to move somewhere else. Most people, if they are getting by at all, tend to stay close to home.

We had no choice on where we were born. It was an accident of birth. By the time we are adults, most people stick around, even though life may be better for them elsewhere.

Personally, I happen to love my place up here in the woods and mountains. However, I also like to travel and have become attached to places many miles away. That's why I think of myself as semi-nomadic, which is a whole different blog post.

-Sixbears

11 comments:

  1. Hmm, aircraft mechanic most of my life, worked 15 years in Egypt teaching maintenance. Loved Thailand, Thai wife didn't work out. Finally settled down in Philippines. Good wife and family, pension goes a long way. Loved growing up in CA. in the 50's and 60's but glad I left.

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    1. You didn't exactly marry the girl next door. Imagine all the adventures you'd missed if you'd never traveled?

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  2. Born and grew up in Minnesota. Lived in Washington State, Colorado, Texas, Arizona and Missouri. Came back home to stay 21 years ago. Wanting to be close to the new grandbabies will do that. :)

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    1. Grandbabies are the reason we are semi-nomadic. If we are gone longer than six months they've grown too much.

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  3. I'll stay in my hill-top house in West Virginia. No floods on the hill, few twisters or high winds, not many earthquakes and no hurricanes.

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    1. Really nothing wrong with staying where you grew up. The trick is to look the area over with new eyes and really see it's strengths and weaknesses.

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  4. Your readers might find this interesting. Grew up in southern OH. At 30 my wife and I decided we wanted to live up north. Got a job in central MN and moved up, we knew no one there. Loved it, stayed there 31 years when due to health problems I finally felt the cold. We thought about this some and decided if we did it once we could do it again. So we made a quick scouting trip to north Mississippi in the summer of 2017. So this past spring we sold our farm, sold, gave away or abandoned all but a light trailer load of "things" and came to MS. Of course there were some difficulties, one being not temporary rentals were to be found, so we lived in the Super 8 until we bought our house. It is not really as easy when you are older, health wise. But on the other hand we had more resources, as in money that young people usually don't have. Not being the type of people to go where "retirees" are common, a lot of people seem to wonder if we are running away or hiding from something since we have no family or ties and this is certainly not a retirement area, but that is their problem, not ours. The hardest is leaving children and grand-children, but modern communication makes that better. Get out folks, live a little. Yea, we are warm.

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    1. Great story Ernie! You know I was somewhat relieved to see you did't just move to Florida like everybody else.

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  5. Moved to GA 26 years ago from FL. Had moved to FL from RI. Will only leave here to travel. - Momlady

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    1. Seems like you've found your spot. Good for you!

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