So, today Joselyn and I were talking with Evelyn, who runs La Boutique and The Guatemala Shop in Moss Landing. Another customer happened to mention that she used to live down the road near Paradise and Walker Valley. And she knew the previous owners of the house I live in, the ones who remodeled the old house and put in a fireplace. Later, Evelyn and I discussed the challenges of moving from a bustling community to a quiet rural area (and dealing with yellow jacket hives, farm animals, and the relative isolation). I love it here, but, after living practically across the street from a neighborhood that included several wineries, Kelly’s French Bakery, an organic grocery, a Thai restaurant, an Italian Cafe, and a nearby tow service and auto mechanic, I do feel isolated. I only found a doctor (a G.P. in Prunedale) that I like after almost three years here. I knew the history of my neighborhood in Santa Cruz, who had lived in various houses, and how the neighborhood looked years ago. I had no idea who had lived previously in my current house, until I stumbled into somebody who did.
Prunedale is relatively nearby, but it doesn’t feel like there is a cohesive community there. Moss Landing is closer, and it does have a community feeling, with its restaurants, art galleries, antique stores and the fish markets (plural if you include the ones on the boats in the harbor). Community is important to me — not in any formal sense; but it’s nice to interact with friendly people who know your name.