There is no perfect place to live in the USA. Sure, you probably have your idea of where “God’s country” is, but at best it only comes close to paradise; every place has drawbacks to offset its advantages. Hawaii, for example, has the kind of climate most of us would enjoy, but the cost of living there is terrible, because anything that can’t be made or grown locally has to be transported across the ocean. And every part of the nation has to deal with natural disasters at one time or another: blizzards, tornadoes, floods, etc. I heard once that when it comes to natural disasters, Utah is probably the safest state, because hurricanes, earthquakes and volcanoes never strike there — but Utah still gets some mighty fierce thunderstorms.
Anyway, if you are looking for a place to retire, here is what you can expect from the most popular retirement havens…
You can retire to Seattle where…
1. You can rust, grow moss on your back and webbed feet all at the same time.
2. Coffee is a major food group.
3. You can wear socks with your sandals and shorts with your parka.
4. You can go to the Seattle Rain Festival…starts Jan & ends in Dec.
5. The four seasons are rainy, rainier, sunbreaks and rain, and construction.
6. And, no matter how much you try, you can’t drive as fast as the Canadians.
You can retire to Phoenix, Arizona where…
1. You’re willing to park 3 blocks away because you found shade.
2. You’ve experienced condensation on your hiney from the hot water in the toilet bowl.
3. You can drive for 4 hours in one direction and never leave town.
4. You have over 100 recipes for Mexican food.
5. You know that “dry heat” is comparable to what hits you in the face when you open your oven door.
6. The 4 seasons are: very warm but tolerable, hot, really hot, and ARE YOU FRICK’N KIDDING ME??!!
You can retire to California where…
1. You make $250,000/year and still can’t afford to buy a house.
2. The fastest part of your commute is going down your driveway.
3. You know how to eat an artichoke.
4. You drive your rented Mercedes to your neighborhood block party.
5. When someone asks you how far something is, you tell them how long it will take to get there rather than how many miles away it is.
6. The 4 seasons are: Fire, Flood, Mud, and Drought.
You can retire to New York City where…
1. You say “the city” and expect everyone to know you mean Manhattan.
2. You can get into a four-hour argument about how to get from Columbus Circle to Battery Park, but can’t find Wisconsin on a map.
3. You think Central Park is “nature.”
4. You believe that being able to swear at people in their own language makes you multi-lingual.
5. You’ve worn out a car horn (if you have a car).
6. You think eye contact is an act of aggression.
You can retire to Minnesota where…
1. You only have four spices: salt, pepper, ketchup, and Tabasco.
2. Halloween costumes fit over parkas.
3. You have more than one recipe for casserole, which you call “hot pot.”
4. Sexy lingerie is anything made of flannel with less than eight buttons.
5. The four seasons are: almost winter, winter, still winter, and construction.
You can retire to the Deep South where…
1. You can rent a movie and buy bait in the same store.
2. “Y’all” is singular and “all y’all” is plural.
3. “He needed killin” is a valid defense.
4. Everyone has 2 first names: Billy Bob, Jimmy Ray, Bonnie Sue, Betty Jean, etc.
5. Everything is either “in yonder,” “over yonder” or “out yonder.” It’s important to know the difference, too.
You can retire to Colorado where…
1. You carry your $3,000 mountain bike atop your $500 car.
2. You tell your husband to pick up Granola on his way home and he stops at the day care center.
3. A pass does not involve a football or dating.
4. The top of your head is bald, but you still have a ponytail.
5. The seasons are: Hiking, Feels Like Snow, Snow, Melt/Snow/Melt.
You can retire to the rural Midwest where…
1. You’ve never met any celebrities, but the mayor knows your name.
2. Your idea of a traffic jam is ten cars waiting to pass a tractor.
3. You have had to switch from “heat” to “A/C” on the same day.
4. You end sentences with a preposition, like, “Where’s my coat at?”
5. When asked how your trip was to any exotic place, you say, “It was different!”
You can retire to Florida where…
1. You eat dinner at 3:15 in the afternoon, to catch the early bird special.
2. All purchases include a coupon of some kind — even houses and cars.
3. Everyone can recommend an excellent dermatologist.
4. Road construction never ends anywhere in the state.
5. Cars in front of you often appear to be driven by headless people.
6. You’ve gotten used to having bugs in the kitchen, and lizards and snakes in the yard.
7. The seasons are: Early Summer, High Summer, Late Summer, and Not Summer.
(p.s., I don’t see anything on this list about the place where I am currently staying, New England. Maybe this page will give you an idea about what the people in the northeast corner of the nation are like.)