Oh my, I have made a horrible mistake

I was up at the new house last night desperately painting cabinets when one of our neighbors-to-be wandered in. She seems lovely, but my first impression, sorry to say, was that she’s a little unworldly. I explained that I am a stay-at-home dad and she seemed not to quite get what that meant.

“So does your wife stay home with the baby?” she replied.

“Nope, just me!” I repeated. She looked a little strained, or maybe she was confused. A couple of minutes later, she asked me what I do for a living. My annoyance crept out a little; I let my speech slip into italics. “Well, before I was a stay-at-home dad, I was a naturalist.”

Finally, I think she got it. And I started getting something else: jittery about the move, now inevitable.

  • We’re moving from a central, urban area to the highest hill in San Francisco, and as you know, when it comes to hills this city’s no slouch.
  • We’re moving from a diverse area where multiple social strata and lifestyles intersect to a quiet, socially conservative neighborhood with two dominant ethnicities.
  • We’re moving from a lively neighborhood where we’re two blocks from an independent grocery and five from a killer playground to a sleepy bedroom street that’s twenty steep minutes from a chain supermarket and only a little less to a playground.

There are tradeoffs, of course. We’ll have a little yard, and a garden for vegetables, and blackberries and a lemon tree. And hiking trails. And buses nearby. And perhaps, like every other time I’ve moved, I’ll get to know and love (and maybe even improve) the neighborhood.

But will Boobaby be lonely? Will I?