What's it like in Asheville, NC?
May 23, 2011 10:35 PM Subscribe
Convince me to move to Asheville, North Carolina -- or convince me not to.
posted by pinetree to Grab Bag (32 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
I am strongly considering moving to Ashville, NC. But: I have never been there! I want to hear about it from you.
Background: I am coming back to the USA in August after a year in Japan. I am 27 years old and a woman. I will have 2-3 months worth of expenses saved up and no ties to anywhere. I miss the town where I went to college (the smart people, the frequent indie rock shows, the nearby hiking trails, hanging out on porches, and how easy it was to meet people because the scene is pretty small. I don't miss feeling awkward because multiple ex-boyfriends live there. So, I want a fresh start!
In the year before I moved to Japan, I lived in a large city with a high crime rate. My living situation was a rundown artist warehouse. My friends there are amazing and I loved the vibrant art/music scene, but I was exhausted from my demanding job at a non-profit organization in the inner city and because there was a large party in my living space almost every night of the week. I struggle with an anxiety disorder and depression (both of which I have made a lot of progress on thanks to cognitive behavioral therapy with professional counselors) and I have decided that the chaotic lifestyle I was leading in that big city just isn't for me. During the past year in Japan, I have had a lot of time to reflect and I realized that I sincerely want to slow my life way down this coming year and focus on self-improvement.
I am artist and a curator as well as a musician, but I usually work full-time in the non-profit or government sector. My hobbies include sewing, making music, collecting records, making zines, reading books, watching experimental films, and cooking. That sort of thing!
What I'm looking for:
-a community of creative, liberal twentysomethings
-an intellectual vibe (smart people who like books, philosophy, etc.)
-experimental films, indie music, artist-run galleries, independent record stores and book stores, a community radio station
-yoga classes & meditation groups
-relative safety - can I walk around alone? can I ride my bicycle in the streets?
-hiking trails and swimming holes nearby
I want to find a place that is fairly small, where you're likely to see the same folks at the coffee shop as at the rock show that night. I'd like to continue to develop my skills artistically, so it'd be great to have a place to take courses, too.
Oh and of course: I need to work. How is the job market there? My resume is heavy on non-profit program manager type jobs, but I am hoping to get into government work eventually. Ideally, I am aiming for 30-40k salary. I briefly considered moving to Portland, OR but shied away after I read about how dismal the economy there is.
Other spots I've heard about that seem like they might fit the bill: Savannah, GA / Charleston, SC / Bellingham, WA.
Bonus points for any specific businesses/institutions/neighborhoods/cultural happenings.
Thank you, Mefites for any advice you've got!