Singles can thrive in a small town

Jessica Yadegaran

San Luis Obispo Tribune

October 11, 2004




Watching a recent trailer for “Sideways,” an upcoming dramedy starring Paul Giamatti, I realized how good singles have it on the Central Coast.

The wine-tasting adventure film — a romance, naturally — was shot up and down our expansive vineyards, from Santa Barbara to Paso Robles and every love-inspiring spot in between.

And boy, do they inspire.

Every scenic spot on the Central Coast is just begging for you to ask some hottie — from work, your softball league, heck, Trader Joe’s — to join you in renting a convertible, putting on your best duds and sipping a wonderful wine while feeding each other chocolates and golden raspberries. (Strawberries are out of season.)

Or why not walk along the calm Morro Bay waters with nothing but a sliver of moon reflecting on sea otter skin to guide you?

If you haven’t figured it out, this column is dedicated to the natural rustic romance of this county and all the ways it’s good for singles. I should know. I lived in San Luis Obispo for two and a half years before moving to the Bay Area last month. This is my last SLO Singles column.

While I think San Francisco is one of the most romantic cities in the world, the Central Coast, with its wild beaches, B&Bs and tucked-away mystery, isn’t too shabby.

And it’s not just scenery that makes life in SLO good for singles. Since the unmarried population is still less than other comparable American cities, the ones who do live here are eager to gather — and stay together. If you meet one at work, he or she might just become one of your best friends. If you meet others while volunteering at a middle school career day, they might be the ones who help you move.

The best part of being single in SLO is just that — being single. Uno. Solo. With little distraction from clubs, and just a sprinkling of bars, I spent some of the best times by myself: Taking a run through Cal Poly after work and being able to blend in with the undergrads — but thanking God I wasn’t still one. Taking up a hobby — mine was yoga — and beginning to master it because you make it more of a personal practice than a gym class. The lengthy, peaceful drives responsible for strengthening long-distance friendships through real telephone conversations rather than brief weekly or, even worse, monthly check-ins.

The next time someone asks you where you live and then follows that up with, “Oh, it must be really hard to meet people,” tell them you know yourself better as a result of living in a small town.

That’s more important than finding “the one” any day.