From 10 Million to 10 Thousand

Astoria, Oregon is a city where everyone knows everyone. With a population of less than 10,000 it shouldn’t be surprising. Coming from a big city like Los Angeles, where the population is 3.8 million in the city and 10 million county wide, I wasn’t sure how I would adjust. Living here for a week already I could say that it’s different, but a good different. One thing that I quickly noticed is that there is no traffic and plenty of parking spots! This city is very pedestrian and bike friendly. Since it’s a small town, you could walk to all your destinations like the grocery store, theater, park, and restaurants. Even though Astoria is a small town, they have a variety of restaurants from Japanese, Mexican, and Bosnian. Seafood restaurants here are the best since they get their fish fresh daily. My favorite thing about this city is its hiking trails. I’m surrounded by hundreds of beautiful hiking trails within an hour drive. If I feel the need to go to a big city I could go to Portland an hour in a half away or to Seattle which is two hours away. Some things that I still need to get used to is most places here close around 7, and others don’t even open on the weekends. Coming from a city where most things are open 24/7, it forces me to think ahead and get what I need to get. Sunset is at 9:30 PM. As much I love having an extra couple of hours of sunlight, it feels weird going to bed with the sun still out. The people here are super nice. Drivers here actually stop at pedestrian crosswalks, and everyone uses their turn signals for a change. The majority of people living here are white with Scandinavian ancestry. In the past couple of years, the Latino population has grown. Currently Latinos make up close to 20% of the population here. Although Astoria is definitely different from Los Angeles, it’s a pleasant and refreshing city that I can’t wait to explore more of.

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