The long haul

Sometimes I dream about ditching this city—pulling up roots and trying someplace new. Seattle or Portland, maybe. San Francisco or even New York City.

It's only the occasional bout of wanderlust, however, not dissatisfaction, that fuels such thoughts.

Sacramento hasn't always been home. As an Army brat, it seems as though I grew up surrounded by moving boxes. I spent the first 13 years of my existence living in two countries and seven cities, big and small. Between kindergarten and the eighth grade, I attended no fewer than eight different schools. Making friends sometimes proved difficult. Putting down roots nearly impossible.

By the time I made it to Sac, I was ready to stick around for a while.

As I got older, I started to think beyond the 916, however, and shortly after my 28th birthday, I packed up a U-Haul and moved to New York City.

I loved Manhattan in so many ways—for its hustle, for its opportunity, for its endless stream of people. Eventually, however, I realized I missed Sacramento, the city I considered home. I missed the city's famous trees; its pretty, walkable neighborhoods; and, most importantly, my friends and family.

And so I returned. And stayed. Hustle is, I decided, relative, and opportunities are what you make of them. The people I'd left behind, however, were irreplaceable.

Sometimes I still dream of hightailing it out of here once more. But even as I read, with a definite twinge of nostalgia and restlessness, this week's cover story (see “I (heart) NYC Sac,” page 20) in which erstwhile River City writer David Watts Barton catches up with former Sactown residents who've made good in the 212, I know I'm likely here for the long haul.