Dear San Francisco,
How did six years go by in the blink of an eye? It seems like only yesterday I arrived - hardened and slightly bitter from my two years on the east coast. It was my second time moving to a city sight unseen and, unlike my first attempt, I instantly fell madly, head over heels, hopelessly in love with you. With your majestic cliff sides, sparkling bay, countless parks…you were like nothing I’d ever seen before. I loved the urban feel mixed with the smell of the eucalyptus when driving through the panhandle. I loved feeling the ache in my calves as I trekked up your great hills after a day of shopping. I loved being able to drive to the ocean after 10 hours of work and listen to the Pacific pound the shoreline. I was smitten from the start and I’ve stayed that way for six years.
And the best part is, you loved me back. You showed me that I don’t have to compromise a small town feel for a big city. I could walk to a coffee shop, pick up some sandwiches, and take the train a few stops to a beautiful, sunny park. I could have a delicious, sophisticated meal while wearing my favorite pair of jeans. I didn’t have to go on tour – the tour came to me. How will I ever find anything like you again? A place where I have access to city, ocean, wine country, skiing, boating, music, fine dining, funky shopping, and inspiring people. There is no place like you. You are magic.
I came to you looking for a new start and what I found wildly exceeded my expectations. I found the man I’d been looking for my whole life. I found some of the best people I’ve ever known, who I’m certain will always be there. I found a confidence I’d forgotten. And I found the opportunity to leave you and fix my life’s only regret. The last time I had the chance to live abroad I didn’t do it, because I was scared. But I’m not scared anymore. I can’t let this pass me by again, even if it means leaving you.
So how do I say good-bye? How do I thank you? How can I possibly carry all these millions of memories and this overwhelming happiness in my heart? It seems an impossible task and that’s why I leave a piece of my heart with you. Because I just can’t comprehend the idea that I won’t be here anymore. Because not all of me could ever bear to leave. I hope I can come back to you someday.
For now, I will carry the memories of sunny beach days in the middle of January. Of dancing at concerts with my best girlfriends. Of epic bus parties and drag show baby showers. Of falling in love and making it forever. These have been the best times of my life, and I am forever in your debt.
All my love and a little more,