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Growing up in multiple locations has been difficult, confusing, as well as an opportunity for discovery and new personal experiences. Being a native to the Bay Area, its always felt like home and I’ve gotten the opportunity to leave three weeks ago. From the age of 5, my parents left San Francisco into a small town in Sonoma County called, Cotati. I have lived there for almost ten years, until finally moving back home to the Bay Area for high school. When I visited my mother that weekend in Cotati, I decided to closely observe this strange town. Strangely, regardless of the amount of years of living there, I never cared to observe Cotati. Apparently, there are many hidden secrets, disturbing and yet, interesting features to Sonoma County. While I rode the Golden Gate Transit bus, from San Francisco, I constantly stared out the window, watching deep green fields and a blazing, auroric sunset that colored the sky with beauty. If anything, Sonoma County is truly beautiful with its spacious skies, powerful, escalating mountains and enormous redwood trees.
However, as much as this seems as a great weekend getaway, what if you lived there? Now, I don’t need to belittle or insult anything or anyone, but there are some issues with living or even staying in a suburban area. I’ve notice some things that are completely foreign to us city folks, and I must say; we are definitely two worlds apart. Cotati is about an hour away from Berkeley, Oakland and San Francisco. Once you’ve passed San Rafael and Petaluma, you’ll reach a small town called Cotati. Through my current observations, I’ve hung around old friends and family, tending to notice some of the same patterns. In Cotati, most people don’t walk, but drive, everywhere. The education isn’t much of a success because sadly, their school system isn’t as diverse and open-minded. Diversity or equality isn’t encouraged and most kids receive poor education that’s either outdated or slightly irrelevant. Believe me, I went to school out there and if you’re any sort of left winged individual, don’t expect any kind of open-mindedness.
That’s another thing, since Cotati and its neighboring town, Rohnert Park, are slow and slightly underdeveloped, as one can be easily bored from simply living there. Don’t expect acceptance from too many people if a person’s gay or colored. If the culture and society out here is pretty bad, why live there? For one thing, it’s not bad to live there if you’re going to retire or want a getaway from the city life. I strongly suggest that parents with young children should not move out there because of intellectual development. Education is not taken too seriously. Sure, you have some good schools, but they are either too far away or you must be ridiculously smart to apply. During my stay, I was taunted and teased for moving back to the bay. Personally, I don’t care; it’s certainly better than living in a town that doesn’t show up on a map. As much as it is beautiful and breath taking to see, geographically, it’s not meant for a permanent settlement. If you do want to live there, then be aware of situations and lack of equality.