General Question

hug_of_war's avatar

Have you ever moved from a quite rural area to the city or vice versa?

Asked by hug_of_war (10725points) June 9th, 2009

I am specifially loooking for the experiences of people who lived in either environment for most of their life up to a point then they moved into the opposite environment and how they adapted to it.

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15 Answers

Dog's avatar

I loved in suburban city my whole life then moved to a tiny mountain town.

I adapted after about 3 years but after 5 years I returned home.

I learned a lot. The cultural differences were amazing.

Jack79's avatar

Moved from a little village on the Welsh mountains (population:12) to London when I was a kid. Don’t remember that much, I adapted pretty fast. Spent a lot of my time on a Greek island, but it was quite cosmopolitan (in the summer at least) and mainly medium-sized cities such as Dresden or Coventry. I find that cities with a population around 300,000 work best for me. And I hate Berlin.

MacBean's avatar

I just looked up the population densities of the places I’ve lived. I was born and raised in a small upstate New York town with (as of the 2000 census) a population density of 152.5 people per square mile.

I lived there for 24 years before moving all the way across the country to a small city with a population density of 1,873 people per square mile. I LOVED the “city” aspect of it, but I couldn’t stand the west coast, so I had to come back to New York. If I could find a place to live around here with that kind of population density, it would be absolutely perfect.

The place in the world where I feel the most at home, though, and the city I plan to live in next is 3,022.2 people per square mile.

saraaaaaa's avatar

I lived in the middle of the full scale farmer countryside in England before moving to a big city for University. The change has been welcoming for the most part, the options of things to do are far better and the ‘small town’ mentality was making me weary. Also because my home town was such a small and slightly suffocating place I hated it when I was there but now when I go back to visit, I truly appreciate what it was I gave up and then spend my time going for walks and things to remind myself of how nice it is.

The only thing I miss is the views and the smells some of them anyway to be able to walk down the road to an old medieval castle, river and waterfall was breathtaking. My compromise is that I live on the outskirts of the city, still not rural but also not busy enough to be in my face 24 hours a day.

Lupin's avatar

We moved from rural western NY to Tokyo for 4 years, then back to Western NY for 5 and then back to Tokyo for 5 years, then back to NY.
My family was very flexible and has loved every place we’ve lived. My kids first went to Japan when they were 4 and 6 and both graduated from high school overseas.
I know for my kids the hard culture shock was retuning to the US when they were 8 and 10. Per my 9 year old “Everyone seems so rude.” “Why are the kids so noisy in school?” “Why is lunch so loud?” “Why don’t kids behave?” “How can I go to Tims’ house if there is no bus?”
But then he found out we can shoot guns in our backyard so everything was fine.
We still have friends there and visit each other periodically to maintain our strong ties.

ubersiren's avatar

I grew up in a very low income, low education, low employment mountain town that, in places, resembled Deliverance. At age 23 my friend and I got an apartment smack dab in the middle of downtown Baltimore. I felt like I couldn’t breathe for like a whole year. Too many people, not enough trees. I drove home every chance I got for a while. To adapt, I just threw myself into any situation I could. I leveled out and felt normal in about a year and a half. But now I have a family in a suburb of Baltimore and would never want to move back to my home town. I learned a lot, though, being around different types of folk.

wundayatta's avatar

I grew up in a small college town, and I could not imagine ever living in a city, much less New York City. For a variety of reasons, I ended up in NYC after college, and I loved it!

Later, I moved to Philadelphia, another city I could not ever have imagined living in, when I was living in NYC. Philly, I found, is like a big city and a small town. The best of both worlds! Please don’t tell anyone—I really don’t want the character of the place to be destroyed by a bunch of outsiders. I love it here!

Aethelwine's avatar

I lived in Las Vegas from 1st through 10th grade. We lived about a mile from the strip. My junior year we moved to the cornfields of Illinois. The town that we moved to wasn’t terribly small, population at the time was about 10,000, but it was a huge culture shock for me. I found it difficult at first to make friends. There were a few people that were very kind and took me in but most had already formed their “cliques” in grade school.

I wasn’t used to “everyone knowing everyone” and I was often bored and felt like there was nothing to do. There was always something to do in Vegas. I hated it so much that after graduation my parents bought me a one way ticket to go back and live with my best friend. That didn’t last long, I ended up going to California and spending two years in college before moving back to Illinois.

It took me a couple of years to adjust. I met my husband, had children and fell in love with rural life. I could never live in a large city now. The town I live in has a population of 3000 and that’s even too large for me. I would miss the wildlife, trees and hospitality of rural folks if I had to live in the city.

CMaz's avatar

I lived in a “small” town on Long Island NY, fishing and clamming community. Then moved to Manhattan. I do love that expensive, smelly, dirty, crazy place! Lived in Hollywood, Ca. The biz is cool, the people suck. No disrespect intended. Moved to Florida, what is there to complain about in Florida? Moved to South Bend, Indiana. Whew, too sleepy a town I did enjoy it, but would not want to live there. Too cold in the winter not much going on. Back to Florida, live in a town called Sebastian. Honestly (my opinion) the best of all worlds. Though I do miss NY city.
Something about the smell of urine in the subway that just says, I love New York!

ubersiren's avatar

@jonsblond : Man, that is a rough age to uproot and move. Glad to see you’ve made it through!

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

Yes I moved from a suburb to the big city. Does that count? There was a culture shock to it.

chelseababyy's avatar

A few times, all different settings, surroundings, culture and landscape.
I moved from Jersey to Florida, much much smaller.
Then Florida to Bakersfield California. Bakersfield is HUGE, there’s barely any grass as well, which is weird coming from Jersey.
Then we moved to Hood River Oregon, where all was green and the biggest store we had in town was a Walmart. We had to drive 45 minutes to any Home Depot, Target, Mall or anything else.
Then we moved to Grand Cayman. This teeny tiny island where everyone is amazingly nice, the drinking age is 18, and the sun shines all year round. It was hard for me at first to understand people, and their broken english, but it’s actually quite awesome.
After that, we came to Denver or well Littleton to be exact, which is so beautiful. Everything is green, there are mountains to the west, and there is no ocean to be found. That’s the only part I dislike about Colorado, is being landlocked. It’s so safe, so big, and there’s so much to do

RedPowerLady's avatar

I spent most of my life as a minor in a small town. As a kid I loved it.
In 5th grade we moved to a “city”. And I loved that even more.
Then I returned to the small town in high school and spent the rest of my years living there and hating it.
Once I was 18, I was outta there and moved back to the “city”.
I have to say that this “city” is nothing compared to “real” cities, but I live in Oregon, lol.

What I hated about the town I lived in was the racism and the fact there was absolutely nothing interesting to do. Where I live now, “the city”, has culture and events and stores to shop in (you know I don’t have to go to a different town to get clothes,lol). It is a huge difference. I would say I adapted pretty well because I had lived her for a couple years as a tween. But even then I adapted well because it was a move I wanted and not something I was forced into. I can say that when I moved as an adult I had a huge culture shock to deal with. I handled that by surrounding myself with people who were like me, also in culture shock and of the same culture as me. It helped quite a bit.

I don’t know if I could survive in a bigger city though. I need the green and couldn’t live with concrete forests. In fact the idea of “small town” life appeals to me quite a bit, as long as it isn’t the town I grew up in and as long as it is within a reasonable driving distance to a bigger area.

Aethelwine's avatar

@ubersiren It is a difficult age to make such a big change. My husband and I dream of moving to northern Wisconsin where there isn’t a “city” for at least 60 miles but our sons are the age that I was when I moved. I promised I would never do that to them. We have three more years before our youngest son is out of the house and then maybe we can make that move. :)

Garebo's avatar

Yes, apartments in Boston and Minneapolis, a good part of my life; than the house or setting I dreamed of my whole life became available, and I jumped on it. It was cheaper, and a bigger bang for the buck at the time than the burbs. I am 30 miles from the city, a mild hassle. I have adapted to the rural setting, and it took a while, but not long, for I am rewarded by loons, swans and good fishing, and met good people and any time I want to walk outside naked, look at the stars and take a piss I don’t have to worry about offending anyone.

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