I have been away from Medium for a while but I am back with more stories about my travels and now my new city.
With Michael, my now husband, we traveled around Europe and lived on Airbnbs for a year. We are both web developers and we traveled as digital nomads, taking work with us wherever we went.
After getting married in February of 2017, I started the immigration process to come and live in the United States where we decided we would settle for the now. Both working in tech, coming to Silicon Valley seemed like the obvious choice. So in mid August we packed our bags once more, landed in San Francisco and crashed at some friends’ apartment.
First it was the job search. Michael already had some interviews lined up but I had only just gotten my green card so I was finally able to work in the country.
I polished my resumé and uploaded it to several job boards and started my search applying to as many places as I could. After a month and a half, I got an offer from an awesome company and now I work with an amazing group of people.
Last time I had a full time job I was living in Guatemala. It was 2013 and a combination of horrible traffic every day and wanting to follow my dreams led me to quit and start working as a freelancer. I started writing and editing, but then decided to learn how to code out of the desire to build my own app to teach creative writing. This turned into a change in career, meeting Michael and taking off to see the world.
Now life in San Francisco is yet another adventure. I now live in one of the most exciting cities living in one of the most exciting times in history, where technology is thriving.
We looked for apartments around the city. We first scouted out neighborhoods and we narrowed down to three: Cole Valley, Lower Pacific Heights and Noe Valley. We liked the walkability, closeness to downtown and the uniqueness of each main street in the neighborhoods. Cole Valley had its cute little corner stores and cafés, Lower Pacific Heights had long Divisadero Street and Noe had the quaint 24th street.
We finally found a beautiful apartment at a Victorian House built in 1904, in that very San Francisco style with bay windows and tall ceilings that I had only seen in family sitcoms from the 90s.
Cost of living in this city is definitely exorbitant compared to other places we’ve lived in, but we are surely enjoying our time in this city. We don’t own a car but drive a Vespa and use public transit, which might not be perfect, but has proven to be reliable.
In four months we are quickly becoming San Franciscans. We take a bottle of wine to Dolores Park on lazy Sunday afternoons, we have joined the De Young Museum and we take hikes around the beautiful Presidio or Land’s End and visit the family of raccoons living in Golden Gate Park. We only go to Fisherman’s Wharf when our family is visiting, and have to take them to the touristic places, and we walk to the Mission to find the best latin food. We are no longer surprised by the steep hills, but we ride up and down with the Vespa and our exercise routine now consists of walking up to a bus station. We love the fog and no longer think of cloudy days as depressing. It’s part of the city and we have learned to embrace it.
San Francisco is a rich mixture of cultures, where I find myself feeling at home finding Guatemalan products (like hand made tortillas) and talking to fellow countrymen, or where I can get all I need to make Sushi by visiting Japan Town and hear so many different languages on my morning commute.
It is also at the epicenter of technology and seeing the buildings where my favorite apps and software are built makes my heart beat fast with excitement to be able to be part of it.
This city has now become our home and I am enjoying everything about it.