Things I Will Miss When I Leave My Life in the Bay


A few months ago, you may have read my post about being a temporary visitor in the Bay Area and deciding what to do next. Well, the decision is made and we are in the middle of planning our big move back to the UK. As we begin to plan I am very excited about getting back to some familiar things, and away from some of my less favourite things about Life in the Bay. There are however also a lot of things I never knew I needed that I now cannot imagine life without. Here are some the things I will miss and those that I won’t from my Life in the Bay.

Won’t Miss

Putting the Public in Public Bathroom

Things I will Miss: Restroom

“Where’s the loo?”

The things I will miss far outweigh the few negative things that I definitely will not miss, so I will start with these few negatives. I don’t care what excuses I hear for the giant gaps around American bathroom doors, you will not convince me they are necessary. I have never gotten used to these giant gaps and have spent most of my years in the Bay Area avoiding using public bathrooms (I also won’t miss calling them bathrooms/restrooms, no one thinks you’re going in there for a bath or a rest).

Crazy Bay Area Rents

If you are here for a short time you will more than likely be living in rental accommodation, and in the Bay, this means a huge expense. Everyone knows that the Bay is an expensive place to be. With Silicon Valley and all the startups that this attracts it is inevitable, but I will be glad to move on to somewhere with a more reasonable cost of living.

And now for those things I will definitely miss, that I never knew I needed and that I wish I could take with me as I head home.

Will Miss

Giant Laundry Machines/Appliances in General

What I Will Miss: Legs dangle from Washing Machine

How doing laundry feels in USA

Now, living in an apartment means I have shared laundry facilities, which I absolutely will not miss. Other people are lazy and selfish and think it is ok to leave their wet laundry in the single machine that serves 8 apartments for a day or more. But, I will most definitely miss the ridiculously huge sizes of the laundry machines here. I am able to do more than double the amount of laundry I would in a British machine in one go. And this goes for all household appliances, giant refrigerators and ovens particularly, I don’t know how I will cope without these.

Silicon Valley Mindset

I have written before about the culture of enthusiasm in the Bay Area but the Silicon Valley mindset surpasses even that. There is such a can-do attitude inspired by the startup scene in the Bay if you say “I wish there was…” someone will  inevitably say ” why don’t you just do it.”No one sees any obstacles, you can and should just go for it. People are excited and enthusiastic about ideas and this is infectious, I’ll miss the positivity and energy of it all.

Open All Hours

What I Will Miss: Open 24 Hours Neon Sign
The UK is not as bad as some European countries where every Sunday sees all stores closed but Sundays do still have limited opening. And public holidays will see a lot of businesses completely close. Not in the Bay, everything is always open, I don’t remember the last time I checked a store opening hours as I have never been to a store and it has been closed. Though this is probably less fun for retail works, it is great as a consumer and I will miss the ease this brings to life.

The Bay itself

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And of course, the big one, the Bay Area itself. The Bay Area is beautiful, living in Palo Alto we have the Bay one side, the mountains and woods of Los Altos and Woodside on the other side and just general beauty and nature all around us. Only slightly further afield there is Tahoe, Yosemite, Carmel and many other amazing destinations to explore, I have definitely not seen all there is to see. Do you want to ski? Surf? Go to the desert? Climb a mountain? See the ocean? Whatever it is, it is never more than a few hours away from the Bay, and that is the thing I will miss the most.

Don’t forget to check out our Bay Area Hidden Gems parts One and Two for exploration inspiration.

What would you miss most if you left the Bay?



About Sarah Jennings

Less than five years ago, I got my first passport and went on my first short holiday outside of the UK to the absolutely stunning Croatia. And it feels like I have never looked back! Since then I have spent 2 years living in beautiful Copenhagen, before arriving in the Bay Area in early 2016. It has been quite the whirlwind adventure. I have used my expat adventure to reignite my lifelong dream to become a writer and editor, returning to my studies and slowly building experience through work and voluntary roles to make this a reality. I have recently left the Bay Area and returned to the UK, to live in London, another place I haven't lived. You can follow my journey at my website - https://www.thereaderwriter.com/blog


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