Today I Moved Out West

“While reading through Carole’s posts about her move to Japan, I thought it would be cool to document my own journey as I make the move out west to Seattle to start my new software engineering job at Google. This is my first night away from home even though I have not actually made it to Seattle yet because I flew directly to Mountain View, California for one week of orientation so I sit in my extremely quiet hotel room late on the night before my first day and I think. “

This is exactly where my thoughts ended that first night when I became too tired and decided that I was going to finish this blog post the following night. However, what ended up happening was I left it for 3 weeks without adding a single word due to a series of excuses and here we are.

The feeling of leaving home for the first time

A question that constantly get brought up by my friends and family members is how I feel about leaving home for the first time. I was fortunate to have the University of Toronto close enough to my house that I opted to stay at home for the duration of my studies. Therefore, this is the first time I am truly moving out of my apartment for the first time and it’s to a far away place. This is supposed to be a very scary thing, right?

I personally do not feel this way because I think we are usually way more empowered to make change than we give ourselves credit for. Some people, such as my parents and many other immigrants, we’re forced to get up and move to a completely new country and environment. Even then, they had the power to make certain choices and mental stances that shaped their experience. I am fortunate that my situation is completely different because I willfully chose to move to a new country, across the continent and my experience will be defined by choices I make, starting from the choice to move in the first place. If I ever decide that the situation is not favorable for me, I can always move back to Toronto or another place in the world . We like to make excuses about why some things are impossible but in reality, there is a lot of variables in life that we have the power to change. For this reason, I do not feel scared about leaving home for the first time, although I do miss my mom’s home cooking! While overall, moving has been a pleasant experience, some things proved to be more annoying than I expected:

Difficulties I did not Anticipate

Proving a proof of address:
I wanted to open a credit card as soon as I arrived to the U.S. However, despite having a signed lease agreement stating that I was the only one authorized to live in my apartment, this was not enough to prove my address. My roommate had to call and request that the utility bill be switched to my name which delayed the process significantly.

Paying my roommate back for rent:
I assumed transferring money to my roommate would be simple. However, I did not anticipate that Venmo would lock me out of my account and require US Id (which I don’t have) to grant me access. I also did not anticipate that Td would require me to go into their branch (the closest one being 3000km away) to confirm my identity before allowing me to send money.

Things that were easier than expected

I was fortunate enough that my roommates previous roommate was moving out and sold me all of his one year old furniture at a discounted cost. That meant that I paid much less for great furniture and that my entire room was furnished when I got there!

Opening a new bank account:
Following all the difficulties associated with all things administrative, I thought that opening a bank account would be a nightmare. Thankfully, opening an account with Chase was super easy and I was able to get it done in under half an hour with no appointment. Very nice!

Finding a Dentist: I had a badly infected tooth that needed a root canal and with my insurance I was able to find a dentist who referred me to an endodontist, who was able to move his schedule around and help me the same day. Overall in less than 48 hours, I was able to see two dentists and get my root canal taken care of. The endodontist even called me over the weekend to make sure I was doing well following the procedure!

I am hoping to write posts about my Seattle experience, commuting in the city and my adventures exploring the surrounding area but this is all for now!

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