Okay, so I moved out West in October of 2004. I knew that a relaxed lifestyle was one of the many reasons for relocating, but damn, I had no idea that the entire state was sleepy. Several weeks after settling in a small rural town, I woke up one Monday morning with gusto and took a trip to my local library. Turns out they weren’t open until Tuesday. What? It was quite sad that a library had such sporadic business hours (most likely due to the lack of state funding).
Eventually new signs of sleepiness popped up. While strolling around to different shops I noticed the trend of business hours operating from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.. Most of which weren’t open for business on Monday. I mean, didn’t these people want to make money? Sure the economic climate in 2004 was different from now but even then there were signs of an increasing decline.
I moved five hours south to San Francisco in 2008—to more hustle and bustle. I thought for sure that in the 12th most populous city of the country with over 800,000 people, things would change. Not entirely. Yes, there were more brown people and more with a third of residents born outside of the U.S. Nonetheless, restaurants, bars, and national institutions still followed the same “normal” business hours model.
Bars close early. Kitchens close early. People hit the club later, so you only have the opportunity to shake your ass from midnight to 1:45 a.m. Oh, and good luck finding a place to eat that isn’t Chicken and Waffles. People often come out to visit and sometimes I have to tell them, “…there really isn’t anything happening at the moment.” It’s just embarrassing.
This morning, instead of running some early errands, I’m complaining to you because the two establishments I wanted to head to before work, aren’t open for another hour.
Don’t get me wrong, I love me some Northern California. I can hear all the natives now, saying, “Welcome to California, now go home.” I totally understand where they’re coming from. This is a beautiful place to be. Full of people who are unlike any in the entire world. There are a vast amount of resources in this state alone and 1 out 10 people in the Unites States live in California. Not to mention that the city of San Francisco has demonstrated successful models for education, health care and environmental city reform. There really is no place like it on Earth.
With that said, I still sometimes wish I moved to New York so that I could party until 5 in the morning. Wake up at 6 a.m., get a bagel and run to work in stilettos ready to do it all over again. Sleepy as hell.