Bryan-College Station,Brazos Valley,Texas A&M and
I moved to the Brazos Valley in 2007. The twin cities of Bryan and College Station are the heart of the Brazos Valley and both are dominated by the large educational institutions of Texas A&M University and Blinn College. On the positive side,the people of this area are nice,friendly and down to earth. The locals have a certain amount of courtesy,respect and civility that is rapidly declining in the rest of America. It is a very conservative area politically,socially and culturally and this is good for the most part,but sometimes it can get obsessive and they can become a little too rigid with no room for compromise. Sometimes,there is no Republican that can do wrong,no Democrat that can do right,no war that comes along that we shouldnt fight and the USA is still the greatest nation on earth no matter what. So some of this can get a little old if you are a little more independent minded. On the other hand,the cowboy boots,hats,western wear,southern/Texican accent,young people that respect/obey elders,respect for authority and the yes sir/no sir,yes maam/no maam atmosphere,respect for law enforcement and the military is refreshing. Texas A&M is a great school and it drives the economy of this area. If there is one thing about it that bothers me,it is the alumni and current students that think it is so great,there is almost a cult like loyalty to it. If you live here and you dont have an Aggie ring(meaning you are not an A&M graduate)you can feel left out and looked down on. Blinn College students are much more pleasant to be around and it is the better atmosphere to work in as a staff member in my opinion. Many people here will say that the cost of living is not bad,but I couldnt disagree more. If you buy a house,it is expensive. As a person who came here from the low cost of living of West Texas,it costs a great deal more to live down here. In West Texas,I had a 3 bedroom/2 bath brand new brick home with a double car garage,fenced in back yard in the nicest part of town and the most desired school district for only $85,000. Here,I had to settle for the same size house,wood frame in a depressed,undesirable part of town and not desired school district and it came to $100,000. So I have nothing good to say about the cost of living here. The other horrible thing about living here and probably the worst that many locals also will not admit to is the fact that the summer time climate is absolute misery. It is a monotonous string of 100 degree days and 80 degree nights with intense heat and withering humidity. From about June all the way to October,it is the exact same forecast every single day and night. There is no variety whatsoever. The climate is excellent,bearable and changeable from November to March. April and May are a little tricky. It can either lean towards the heat of summer or the coolness of the winter. Get ready to sweat and smell in the summer. You will walk out of the shower and break out into a sweat right away. The crime rate is low considering that this is Texas. Much lower than the surrounding large cities. The smaller city living is wonderful,but the closeness of Austin,Houston and Dallas is of great benefit. The traffic can be heavy and annoying when school is in session,but it is fabulous,quiet and peaceful when school is out and the students are gone. Unfortunately,aggressive driving and bullying on the road is as bad here as it is everywhere else in America. I personally have come to believe that this is a great place to come and go to school for 4 years and get your degree and then move on somewhere else. It is also a great place to come for a few short years to use as a stepping stone to another place. I do not think that this is a good place to spend your entire life and career in. It is also not a good place to retire. It is all student oriented,so if you are a senior citizen or a middle aged or older single,this is not going to be a comfortable place for you. Young families,young singles,youth and children though will thrive here.
Chris | Bryan, TX