You Know You’re Living In Silicon Valley When…

IMG_0168In a few weeks we will be celebrating yet another momentous occasion: the one-year anniversary of our move to Silicon Valley! It’s hard to believe that it’s already been a whole year–especially since, in a lot of ways, I still feel like I’m getting my bearings and learning the ropes. Which is understandable, because there are a LOT of new ropes to learn here. It’s difficult to explain, but Silicon Valley is a unique bubble that is truly unlike anywhere else in the world. After living here for nearly a year, I am still baffled by the idiosyncrasies that make Silicon Valley distinct.

You know you’re living in Silicon Valley when…

  • You and/or your spouse works in high tech, and you moved here for The Job.
  • Teslas and Ferraris are as common place as Ford Escapes and Toyota Corollas were “back home”.
  • You have finally accepted the fact that paying $4,000 per month for rent is your new normal.
  • You can smell if it’s time for the garlic festival when you drive through Gilroy.
  • Every person you meet is from NOT-Silicon Valley. Your neighbors, friends, and co-workers are recent transplants from some other state/region/country.
  • You contemplate playing Keeping Up With The Joneses…until you realize that your family just can’t handle weekly Lacrosse games, soccer practices, piano recitals, Physics tutoring, Mandarin classes, performance dance class, and art enrichment. You hope that your poor deprived children will survive to adulthood in one happy, under-achieved piece.
  • You have a “Brown is the New Green” sign staked in your front yard so passers-by will approve of your golden “drought-conscious” lawn.
  • You’ve eaten pizza at Mountain Mikes while about 200 little boys wearing Little League uniforms play Pinball in the arcade room.
  • Go, Giants! Go, Golden State Warriors! Go, Sharks! Go, Earthquakes! Go, (enter name of fanatical sports team)!
  • Your housing development is located in a former apricot orchard.
  • You spend the morning hiking in your neighborhood Open Space Preserve, your afternoon sipping vino at a local winery, and your evening lounging at the beach.
  • You’ve managed to untangle the spiderweb of freeways in your mind so that you can travel a 15-mile stretch on 5 different freeways: When going from Milpitas to Cupertino, simply take the 880 to the 101 to the 280 to the 17 to the 85 right back to 280. Easy-peasy.
  • When you need a lemon (or a persimmon or a pomegranate or an apricot) you just go pick one off the tree in your backyard.
  • You spent more on preschool tuition for your 3-year old this year than you did for your undergrad at the state university.
  • When somebody calls you on FaceTime there are 4 simultaneous rings going off throughout your house: your iPhone, your iPad, your MacBook, and your AppleWatch.
  • You’re wearing a t-shirt and flip-flops. And it’s February.
  • If you value personal space and your sanity, you know very well to avoid all public venues on weekends and holidays.
  • You ❤ BART and CalTrain.
  • You’re playing with your kids at the neighborhood park and you realize that everybody is speaking another language: The mom pushing her toddler on the swing is rattling off German into her cell phone, the kids playing on the monkey bars are speaking to each other in Spanish, the little girl on the slide is calling for her mom in French, the little boy digging in the sandbox is giving directions to his brother in Mandarin, and the family at the picnic table is conversing in Hindi.
  • Tesora from Philz is your new best friend.
  • You have a membership to the local Classic Car Wash. You can’t remember the last time you washed your own car (we’ll just say it’s because you’re being drought-conscious).
  • You don’t pay for home internet service because your entire city is covered with free WiFi, courtesy of Google.
  • You used to think an Ivy League education was special.
  • You are awoken every Tuesday morning by your gardener blowing leaves off your front lawn.
  • You spend your summers at your local Cabana Club.
  • Your children–who spent the first part of their lives LIVING IN A RAIN CLOUD–do an ecstatic happy dance whenever the clouds darken and spit out a few drops of precipitation.
  • You were simultaneously creeped out and riveted by your tour at the Winchester Mystery House.
  • You have at least one robot in your home (Mommy after 5 PM not included).
  • Your 1952 Ranch house is worth more than a Manhattan penthouse.
  • You certainly do NOT have more than 2.1 children.
  • You freak out every time a motorcycle zips by you between lanes of stalled traffic on the freeway.
  • You plan outdoor events during winter months.
  • Your Google Shopping Express order is waiting for you on your front porch in its cute little white box with the blue parachute.
  • ANTS.
  • You’ve eaten authentic Dim Sum at least once in the last month.
  • You compulsively check school scores to determine which neighborhoods you may possibly consider living in.
  • The fragrance of jasmine and orange blossoms outside your window fills your bedroom while you’re sleeping.
  • While you curse the crowds and the high cost of living, you can’t imagine ever leaving this unique corner of the globe.

Silicon Valley: I love it, I hate it…and, honestly, I can’t get enough of it. Strange as it may be here, this is our new home. And, for what it’s worth, I think we’ll keep it.

2 thoughts on “You Know You’re Living In Silicon Valley When…

  1. Elizabeth says:

    Oh this list makes me cry. Phil had an interview for a company in Fremont and is going out to interview in August and I NEVER want to move back out there. I am glad that you love it more than hate it. It’s a different place to live. So is where we live now but for totally different reasons.


    • Allison says:

      Wow! I wouldn’t be half sad if you guys moved to Fremont–I know you have a bit of a hate-hate relationship with the Bay Area, but we sure would love to see more of you!


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