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Relocating to Texas

Wodin

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SF'ers,
I'm looking to uproot my life here in Illinois and move to Texas. Where exactly in the Lone-Star State I will end up I am not sure. That's where you can offer me some advice hopefully.

So, a here's a bit about me. I'm 31, very much into fitness (hiking, running, weights), and love the outdoors. I tend to vote Republican for fiscal reasons but am a social liberal. I'm hoping to meet a nice girl and get married and do the whole white picket fence thing. I enjoy dining out but hate chain places, so local mom and pop joints always win me over. I love to find local gems like farmer's markets where I can buy homemade jams and stuff, so I guess it could be said I'm sort of old-fashioned. I drive a full size truck, but don't have it all jacked up with huge tires or anything. I like to think I dress well when I want to but feel most comfortable in running shoes, cargo shorts, and a t-shirt.

Anyway, at the moment I am looking between Dallas, San Antonio, and Austin. I'll be able to live in a nice area, and I have heard good things about Uptown in Dallas. I've never been to Texas except for a drive through of Amarillo as I got out of the military nine years ago. Austin sounds like a trendy place, and of course finding a nice Longhorn gal there would be a plus.

Hopefully my post was at least half coherent. Let me know what you think!
 

Bhowie

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Austin is a lot more expensive than any of the major other major cities. Is there anyway you could take a week off and just visit all of the places on your list for a day or so? It is hard to give someone sound advice about such a major decision w/ such little info.
 

Rosenberg

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I'm a little let down that Houston didn't make the cut, but given your criteria it's not too hard to see why. Austin would seem to be the obvious. The thing about Austin and Dallas is that they're like polar opposites. Austins has no shortage of hippies and the like. Beautiful surrounding areas. Dallas has no shortage of materialistic asshats. Surrounded by seemingly endless flat nothingness
 

Wodin

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Well I actually plan to take a few days to drive around next week. It's hard to get a true feel for a place on a drive through.

I'm sort of wierd. I'm definetely not a hippie and have quite a bit of good old boy in me, but I also tend to adopt a view that others can do what they want so long as they stay off my lawn. The endless flat nothingness around Dallas would be very similar to the endless bean and corn fields near me now.

I've got nothing against Houston, I just thought the other three would be more in line with my interests. I'd love to find somewhere I could end up with a few acres and a homestead of sorts.
 

grundletaint

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austin fits that description. very active/fit city, casual, farmer's markets, etc...

dallas makes me want to kill and houston has some nice aspects but it's kind of gross for the most part. san antonio's a shithole, too.
 

TotesMcGotes

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Austin seems to me the winner here, having lived in Texas my whole life (Houston and Austin) I have seen both sides of the Texas spectrum. Everything you listed the fitness, mom and pop restaurants, pretty woman are in abundance in Austin. You will find your fair share of hippiness but I think its a little refreshing when compared to other parts of Texas. I can't really speak for Dallas since I have only visited, but when I did all I seemed to see was douchey True Religion wearing young money and big haired Cowboys fans... Austin to me is a more laid back community with more laid back people, it's more diverse, prettier by far, and just a happy place to live in. At least all this has been true in my 20 year life span thus far...
 

gnatty8

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I lived in Houston for a few years in the early 2000s, and found it pleasant. The weather was not the best (the mild winters in no way make up for the miserable summers), but it had most of what one would come to expect from a recently large city. The traffic was pretty bad, but there are ways around that, like living in town (Rice Village is a nice area from what I recall), and having Galveston nearby was a nice thing. That said, from reading your post, you'd probably do better in Dallas or Austin.
 

Thomas

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I'd go with either Austin or San Antonio. I like Austin but love SA. Plus, there's a strong military slant to SA that might work well with your background, depending on how you plan to earn a living.
 

JustinW

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You sound pretty Austin. It certainly fit my many personalities ("Half hippie, half redneck - I'm always a suspect" --Kevin Fowler).

Only downside is that everyone else in Texas also wants to live in Austin, so real estate is expensive and employment harder to find. Land outside of Austin is very cheap - I had 10 acres just outside Elgin (45min commute in to Austin) and there are some nice small towns (Bastrop is very under-rated, IMO).

Houston has a lot going for it, but is a BIG city. SA might also work for you.
 

airportlobby

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I would never live in San Antonio. It's just a snooze. Very few cool people and things to do besides get fat and pump out babies or drive an hour to Austin. Austin is the prettiest town and most fun, but it's also expensive and hard to make money. Dallas and Houston are much more oriented to making money, which can be good (sometimes living in Austin is frustrating b/c it seems like all the people with money brought it here from somewhere else). Both Dallas and Houston have areas I consider nice and fun. The cultures of Dallas and Houston are very different. Houston is a bayou city and is oriented towards Louisiana, the Gulf and Mexico. Dallas is a cross between a midwest and southwest city.

I'd advise you to spend some time in each city and determine where you feel most at home or challenged or whatever it is you are looking for. What line of work are you looking to be in?

PS - obligatory native Austinite's futile "don't move here motherfucker, go vote republican and raise your white bread family in Dallas."
 

Mark from Plano

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Dallas haters gonna hate.

My take:

Austin: Pros: offbeat culture, lots of live music, college-town vibe, most beautiful scenery in the state.
Cons: Most expensive cost of living in Texas.

San Antonio: Not really for living. Go there occassionally to hang out on the River Walk, then leave. There's not much there to be interested in IMO.

Houston: Pros: Big city vibe. Good restaurants and bars. Near the beach, Galveston, lots of boating etc.
Cons: Summer heat and humidity can be brutal. Lack of zoning means that it is a particularly ugly city in places, though really nice in others.

Dallas: Pros: Perhaps the best cost-of-living of any major city in the US. Good restaurant/bar scene. 2nd best live music scene in Texas (though a pretty distant 2nd to Austin). People who move here never want to leave, but probably can't explain exactly why.
Cons: Can come off as douchy if you decide to hang out with the douches...if not, the douches will leave you alone. People from Houston will hate you without ever meeting you. Scenery is non-existant.
 

Thomas

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Mark, I don't hate you.

Well, okay...I do.

jk brah.


Hey, am I too old to say brah? It just feels wrong to say that. Like I should untuck my shirt or something and slip some Jager into my coffee.

BTW I finally responded to your Morningwood post.
 

Mark from Plano

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Originally Posted by Thomas
Mark, I don't hate you.

Well, okay...I do.

jk brah.


Hey, am I too old to say brah? It just feels wrong to say that. Like I should untuck my shirt or something and slip some Jager into my coffee.

BTW I finally responded to your Morningwood post.


 

Wodin

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Right on guys, thanks for all the replies. I will be sure to check them out. I work in the security field and do alright, so I ought to be ok with the COL in Austin. My only fear there is I've heard it is a liberal bastion. So if I drive my truck I wouldn't want to get shunned for not driving a Prius.

Is there a good culture of fitness in Austin? As they say, everything is bigger in Texas. That's fine, except for I'm not into Lane Bryant types.

Mark, that's funny how you mentioned the tension between Dallas and Houston. It's the same in IL between Chicago and "us hillbillies" from elsewhere.
 

Thomas

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Originally Posted by Wodin
Right on guys, thanks for all the replies. I will be sure to check them out. I work in the security field and do alright, so I ought to be ok with the COL in Austin. My only fear there is I've heard it is a liberal bastion. So if I drive my truck I wouldn't want to get shunned for not driving a Prius.

Is there a good culture of fitness in Austin? As they say, everything is bigger in Texas. That's fine, except for I'm not into Lane Bryant types.

Mark, that's funny how you mentioned the tension between Dallas and Houston. It's the same in IL between Chicago and "us hillbillies" from elsewhere.


LOL, as people we all get along, but the two cities do tend to look down their noses at each other.

...re: Austin, one of the biggest races I ever attended was a 10k in Austin. They really get behind their athletic activities and may well be the best place to run, bike, or swim in the state. The hills will also whip you into shape.
 

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