has written 1 SperlingViews. Currently, Natalie is living in Gilbert, AZ and has a little something to say:
Strongly consider before moving here. Posted On: 6/14/2012 1:44:58 PM
I'm currently researching moving to a new home state and came across this site. With all it's helpful information and local insight, I couldn't just leave the site without adding my two cents. I have lived in four states and traveled quiet a bit. I consider myself an open minded person and felt that I could deal with any situation or climate. I am very, very, wrong. I have been in Phoenix/Gilbert Arizona for almost seven years. I noticed right away upon moving here how difficult the people were. But, figured I can deal with anything for two years. Somehow I'm still here and biting at the bit to move as quickly as possible, broke or not.
The first thing I wish someone told me or at least reminded me is this is an inhospitable desert, period. Very Dry, Very Harsh, Very unfriendly, Extremely Hot! The people and climate both. There is never enough lotion, water, electrolytes, shade,..you name it. Dehydration is a constant. If you don't continually drink fluid, especially in summer, you will get violently ill from the heat, without warning because most people don't sweat. It's so dry your sweat evaporates off your skin before you realize it. You don't even realize your getting thirsty until its too late. Once you've had heat stroke, it's easier to get it again the next time. Anyone considering moving here must love heat and dryness! Many summer day's are 120degrees in a row. Also, don't forget to bring your large rimmed hat, flip flops (20+ pairs designer with bling), short shorts, and tank tops. It doesn't matter what shape or size you are, most people are just trying to stay cool and wear hardly anything in summer. Now, after the 5 months of hell, the weather is actually quiet nice. But, if the heat doesn't kill you, the allergies will. I never had allergies until I moved here. Many people share the allergy issue here, due to the specific desert plants. Also, the cooler months are filled with retirees from Midwest. Literally the population doubles as they arrive. Streets get clogged and slow down. Traffic nightmare.
A nice fact is there are hardly bugs here. Nothing like the Midwest. But, the nasty desert reptiles will likely sting badly. Scorpions for one, ugly large desert spiders. Plus the other biting or stinging desert creatures, snakes, etc. will most likely kill you. To have fun out there get quads or a 4x4 truck, and high top hiking boots. Bring your hat. Lot's of trails, mountains, and terrain. Go off the trail and it could mean death from dehydration. If the helicopters have to pick you up off camel back mountain, you will most likely have to pay for that ride out of your pocket. Many people go out hiking without enough water, get dehydrated, bitten, fall off a cliff, etc. Especially for the visitors. Just use caution, but playing in the desert can be a lot of fun. Oh, and Arizona people really love their guns too. Really love guns of all kinds. Really.
People never quiet accept you, but eventually tolerate your presence. They are as inhospitable as the climate. It's good to be a winter visitor (aka: snow bird), or very independent/loner type person. It is also very transient. Most people are from somewhere else and merely passing through. A typical stay here is 3-5 years, then people move onto a new place or back to where they came from.
Culture is almost obsolete. There are some small art venues, museums, etc, but are scaled back, small, and sometimes difficult to find out about. A lot of art is kitschy, not original. Although, when you do find true artists work here, it is quiet breathtakingly original and beautiful. If your coming from a large metro place like Los Angeles, be prepared to cry for culture.
Food/Dining, they have small pockets of hole in the wall places that have decent food. I have had really good food here from places we frequent, but nothing to write home about. Local people will know where to go. Good dining is out there, just not easily found.
If you like desert living and the color brown, you should really like it here. Every place has it's good and bad qualities. This ones scales are tipped in the bad direction for me. Time to move on.