Living in the South From A New Yorker's Perspective
Living in North Carolina from a New Yorker's Perspective
If you're considering moving to the South from New York to say North Carolina, get ready to embrace change.
Living in North Carolina for me has been peaceful and positive, but not productive financially thus far one year later. NC does offer good value housing wise whether you are a renter or homeowner.
The economy in NC is good. The Research Triangle Park (RTP) area which includes the towns of Cary, Chapel Hill, Durham and Raleigh have many progressive companies based within RTP including top quality high-tech companies such as IBM, SAS, Red Hat and Lenovo to name a few. So, If you have a solid tech background; chances are you will hit the ground running and will earn a competitive salary quickly.
However, I wish someone would have told me what the town of Cary cynically stands for; Containment Area for Relocated Yankees before I moved there. And be prepared; your water and sewer bill will be much more expensive. The major cities I've been to; downtown Charlotte and Raleigh are kind of like a mini Manhattan with fewer and smaller buildings and also provide better/less expensive parking options.
In NC there are new roads to appreciate as well as lots of greenery in a clean state where the slower-paced, peaceful quality of life is to be enjoyed along with friendlier, more relaxed people. I'll admit I did learn to enjoy playing cornhole. For sure there is less traffic than driving in the New York metro area and cigarettes are much cheaper.
If you are a lifetime New Yorker like me, you will miss the pizza and bread products of all kinds you were accustomed to almost anywhere in the NY Metro area. On day 1, I went into the local Harris Teeter and asked for a knish and the deli clerk looked at me oddly and said "What is knish?" Chewing tobacco and Mountain Dew are popular items purchased at every Kangaroo Express I've been to and that's certainly not what sells well in NY.
It would be advantageous to follow the college basketball and football teams that rule the state in NC and have earned national attention for good reason. That is if you want to attract local friends quicker.
Anytime the almost always top-ranked Duke Blue Devils play led by the legendary Mike Krzyzewski "Coach K", who has won five National Championships (1991, 1992, 2001, 2010, 2015) it's must see TV in NC. His 1156 wins is the most ever for a men's college basketball coach. His overall record over 45 years is superb; 1156-350. When it's UNC Tar Heels vs. NC State Wolfpack in either basketball or football, it's a big event and the talk of the town.
Chances are like me; your teams are your teams for good at this stage/age. I still take pride in telling locals I am a NY Mets fan and not a Yankee fan. However, I've always admired Coach K. He's a well-respected winner year after year.
Get ready to hear often "You're fine" and that's in reference to it's OK and not your looks. Simply noted North Carolina is not like Florida which has many more transplanted New Yorkers. North Carolina is for sure more of the real South where the quality of life is good.
However, I believe in what's been said often "Home is where your heart is." Despite the excellent living conditions, my heart wasn't there.