After graduating from the University of Maryland, I was faced with the same decision that most recent graduates face. Where in the world do I want to live? And what in the heck am I going to do for a living? Not having any actual reasoning for answering either of the preceding questions, I decided just to go on a leap of faith and move all the way across the country to somewhere entirely new. Having not ever previously moved out of the state, I knew it would be a real challenge and adventure for me. Not having any friends in Austin, I knew it would be a real opportunity for me to branch out and meet the world.
I’m certain that other individuals have faced more trying times than this. And, assuming there are more than a few of you reading this blog, I’m also wagering that many will just overlook the difficulty of an interstate move (especially my military friends). But, for me, this move was a real struggle. It took patience, planning, creativity, and a willingness to push myself outside of the comfort zone that I had established.
For starters, finding a moving company proved to be one of the most challenging things that I had not accounted for. I mean, we live in a world where I can get a “taxi” with an iPhone, one finger, and 4 minutes. I wrongly assumed that finding a moving company would be equally as simple. Boy, was I wrong. After hours of online research, I finally went with this long distance moving company aggregator – http://greatguysmoving.com/long-distance-moving-companies/ – to let them do the legwork for me of contacting multiple companies to get a quote. The quotes that I ended up receiving were all over the place. There didn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason to why some charged high prices and others low-prices. In the end, I just went with the cheapest. I’d say that I got about what I expected. Nothing was damaged too severely.
The second unexpected difficulty that I faced was finding an apartment. Not because of a lack of technology, like above, but because of a lack of supply. The Austin real estate market is red-hot right now and has the prices to show for it. I ended up going well over my intended budget and also having to live well outside of the radius I had initially planned on.
Lastly, the difficulty of making new friends surprised me. I realize that I’m not the most outgoing guy in the world, but I’m also not a closet hermit. Despite my social charm, I honestly struggled with finding new friends in Austin. Maybe it’s because I didn’t quite fit the hipster culture… and I’m certainly not the cowboy type. I guess I just ended up somewhere in between. But, as with most things, give it enough time and persistence usually pays off. Connecting with a church helped me break into new social circles and meet some amazing new friends.
Though it wasn’t the easiest of journeys that I’ve been on, moving across the country will certainly stand out in my lifetime as one that challenged my character, will-power, and patience.