Wow, I can't believe it's been over 6 weeks since we've moved to Idaho. We're pretty much settled. We have callings in the ward. And the residency seems to be going pretty well. And Idaho is really great. I think Utahns have a tendency to bash their neighbors to the north, but there are some really cool things about living in Boise.
First, this place has amazing parks. The Boise river runs through downtown and all along it are huge green parks with fountains, rose gardens, museums, the zoo, and trees, trees, trees. There are paths for running and cycling, tons of grass area for Taichi or LARPing, whatever your pleasure. You can fish along the river and some parks have their own stocked ponds. And everyone loves to float the Boise river and get out afterward and hang out for a BBQ along the greenbelt.
Second, Boise is still relatively small, but has all of the amenities of a big city. It has a robust awesome downtown with great restaurants, a huge farmer's market (every Saturday), and various other cultural activities. I guess they've got a pretty good college football team too.
People, for the most part, seem much friendlier than the general population of Salt Lake City. Strangers greet us and engage in conversation all the time at grocery stores or on the street. And not everyone seems to be in such a big hurry on the roads (at least not as badly as in Utah). This isn't always the case, but people don't seem to have such an impending agenda here.
So, it's basically like the Utah of my youth up here, but with more places to eat and shop.
It's funny though, I have met with other residents and people from the south or midwest who think the mountains here are fantastic. I'm sure once you get to the actual mountains they are, you know like in Stanley or McCall (1-2 hours away), but the mountains you can see here in Boise aren't mountains. No sirree. Every day when I ride my bike or scooter to the hospital looking at the foothills in the distance it makes me long for the the beauty and grandeur of the Wasatch Front, the great view from my parents deck in Sandy, and the ability to drive less than 30 minutes to Big Cottonwood Canyon.
I wouldn't say that I'm usually the homesick type, but Ali, the kids, and I are excited to visit home in the next two weeks. Both sets of our folks have come to visit, and it was great to see them up here, but we're excited to visit them now. Boise's great, but home is where our family and mountains are.