From Boston to Austin ~ 28 May 2021

Some news - I’m moving to Austin, Texas!

The Origin

Boston, Massachusetts has been the center of gravity for most of my life. I have so much gratitude for the education, people, nature, community, and opportunity I’ve experienced here. While I’ll always carry a piece of Boston with me (sports loyalties included), I’ve had the itch to travel and understand more of the world.

That’s the urge that precipitated month-long stays to both New York and San Francisco in 2018 and 2019 (respectively) after I graduated. While both NY and SF are amazing places, my short-term “tryout” ultimately didn’t pan out, and I returned to Beantown.

This trip feels a little different. I never thought that Texas would be on my radar. But the call has been strong. I’ve heard amazing things about Austin culture. Not merely the barbecue, live music, and booming tech scene — I’m going because I feel an energy in Austin that hasn’t drawn me to a place before.

It feels like the beginning of a grand adventure.

The Intention

This move is scary, for sure! I’ve never been this far away from family. I’ve never ventured outside of the northeastern US and the comfort zone of the coasts. But that uncertainty of the unknown has a strong pulling force, and it’s helped me to think deeply about why I want to move, and why now.

I’m looking for new energy, new inspiration, new community. This next stage of my life is one of optimism and exploration — a time where I intend on evolving, learning, failing, understanding, realizing, and attaining mastery in my crafts. Moving to Austin is the next step on that path.

I plan to become a sponge and absorb all of Austin that I can. The city is, for good reason, concerned with Keeping Austin Weird — especially because of all the new folks flocking to it right now. I want nothing more than to identify the weirdness that makes Austin, Austin, and cultivate it endlessly.

I also plan to contribute as much as I can to my new city. I’m excited to make new friends, support local businesses, and find new adventures along the way.

The Decision

Unlike other travel situations where I’ve hemmed and hawed over whether or not to go, the idea of Austin (which surfaced over dinner with my girlfriend and roommate) left no room for question. The energy around that tiny dining table shifted for all of us when we realized the decision to move was unanimous.

Between the freedom of remote work, warmth all year round, live music, excellent food, a diverse population, space for hobbies, proximity to nature, affordability, and the desire to start fresh made the decision all the more obvious.

When things are right, they click. When things are right, there’s hardly a need to decide. Because when things are right, they decide for you, and your heart is fully on board. At least, that’s how it was for me.

I don’t know how long I’ll be in Austin. Maybe a year or two? Five? Forever? However long it is, I intend to live it to the fullest.

The Move

So, we’ll be heading out soon! We’re packing our cars with whatever belongings we can carry, getting out of our Boston leases, and driving halfway across the country until we reach Austin.

It’s not going to be easy — but good things rarely are!

I’ll post some updates on Twitter, so if you’re interested in finding out how the move goes, stay tuned there!

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© Saalik Lokhandwala, 2021