Do Idahoans Despise Newcomers from All States or Just California?
It wasn’t that long ago that I relocated to the Treasure Valley from the Lone Star State and let me just say it has been an incredible experience to this point. I’ve been welcomed with open arms at my position here at Townsquare Media and every local business that I’ve interacted with has been nothing short of amazing.
When I reveal to a curious local where I’m from, they’re extra kind to me which I wholeheartedly accept. There are other circumstances though when revealing where I just so happened to be born (which we all know is out of our personal control) felt like dodging a bullet.
Just this past week, I was on the way home and needed to stop for some much-needed beverages after a long workday. As I’m in line, I hand over my driver’s license to the cashier when he noticed my license was for the state of Texas.
“Man, thank God you’re not from California, those mother[expletive] ruin everything,” he said as he casually bagged the pair of six-packs I bought.
“I’m sorry to hear that, what is it they’re ruining?” I asked, wondering if I’ll hear about rising home costs, cost of living, or even people buying property here despite not living here.
“Everything, man. They need to get out, they’re ruining everything.”
I can totally see how a population boom would raise home prices and I can even understand locals wanting newcomers to stay out. But why people from a specific state?
Idaho vs. California?
Thankfully, I am from Texas because that’s not the only encounter I’ve had where someone told me I was “lucky” to not be from California. Here’s my question though: what if I was?
When I arrived in Texas, it was because I accepted an opportunity that was too good to pass up for my family and me. To work in an industry that I know and love while getting the opportunity to relocate to one of the most beautiful states in the country in Idaho.
Seems typical so far, right?
From there, I began a house hunt to find a place to live which I very quickly learned was going to be an uphill battle with booming costs. Eventually, I got my family of four into a townhome that we quickly adapted to being we were coming from a house in Texas. So, what did we do once we got our townhome at market rate? We went back to settling in, using the days I would be off to go out together as a family and explore. We even kept the cars we brought up from Texas. I have to add that being our family of four is from Texas, the snow was an incredible bonus and something my four-year-old couldn't wait to play in.
So far, still normal?
This is where I struggle to understand why someone from California would do anything that much different than someone from Texas when coming into Idaho. We’re all human. I have to say, that I’ve been extremely fortunate to have an amazing experience, but what if I was from California searching for the same opportunity?
Am I California’s biggest fan? Definitely not but that’s not a knock on the state of California. It’s just not for me, just like it isn’t for a lot of Idaho natives. Will Idaho turn into California because of an influx of California residents moving to Idaho? Not likely either.
To think an entire state can morph and mimic everything California is doing from top to bottom, at least in my opinion, isn’t realistic. Will there be a long-term influence on Idaho from California? It’s possible, but those kinds of drastic changes would take time.
Also, is anyone considering that MAYBE people from California or from any state for that matter actually want to live the “Idaho lifestyle.” We all know how amazing the Treasure Valley is!
As a newcomer, I continue to look forward to learning more about Idaho culture, its people, and respecting what it means to live in the Treasure Valley. For locals, stopping people from coming to Idaho will never happen and we all know this. We might as well embrace what we can and remember that we’re all on Team America in the end anyways. We can all get along regardless of where we’re from.
I can say without a doubt that my experience from Texas to Idaho has been amazing; I hope future newcomers regardless of which state they come from, have that same amazing experience.
Feel free to sound off and let us know your thoughts!