The lights of New York City may dazzle, but the comforts of home offer more warmth. Three years ago, Eugene, Ore., residents Linda and Kevin Pirch moved to the East Coast when Kevin took a teaching job at Lehman College in the Bronx.
Baby Ella was the tipping point. For years, Shane and Allison Young flirted with the idea of moving from Portland to Coeur d'Alene. When the couple learned they were expecting a fourth child, they decided it was time to commit.
Sheryl and Scott Kinder-Pyle like adventures, especially those they're called to. As Sheryl sips tea and Scott drinks coffee, they share a pastry and talk about God and church and a move last year that took them all the way across the country.
Leaving Spokane was just too tough, so Cheri and Gary Reed decided to stay. "The girls had been after us for years hoping we'd move over here," says Cheri, adding that returning to the couple's home in Toledo, Wash., grew harder each time they visited their two grown daughters and their families. "I'd cry all the way to the freeway."
The taste of a fresh cherry changed Jackie Erovick's life. In July 2006, while touring the Inland Northwest after a family reunion in Montana, Erovick and her family happened upon Green Bluff. They stopped at an orchard, sampled the ripe cherries, struck up a conversation with the orchardist and spent two hours walking the 10-acre property.
After first arriving in the United States from communist Czechoslovakia, Paul Hajek earned $3.15 an hour washing dishes at a Fred Meyer bakery in Lansing, Mich. "Actually, I'm glad I did that," Paul says now, reflecting on the job that helped him learn English – and simultaneously encouraged him to go to Michigan State University and earn a degree in physics.
The Spokane that Jon Louis left 20 years ago is not the same city he came back to earlier this year. When he left in the mid-1980s, people asked him if he experienced culture shock moving from Spokane to the East Coast, he says.