Eucalyptus Vs. Birch

I just got back from five days in California: the Bay Area, Marin County and Berkeley. What a stunning place. I saw a lot of eucalyptus trees.

eucalyptus-2Photo by jar (away) via Creative Commons on Flickr.

I lived in Berkeley briefly many years ago. I’d forgotten the enchanting smell of eucalyptus. It makes the air feel like it’s purifying your lungs.

My friend Katie told me that these beautiful trees are an invasive species. They aren’t meant to be there, and they cause problems for the native vegetation.

I can’t help loving them anyway.

eucalyptus-1Photo by jar (away) via Creative Commons on Flickr.

But I’m a die-hard New Englander. That’s why I came back to this region when I had the chance to settle in Berkeley and start a west-coast life.

I missed the radio stations that started with “W” instead of “K”. I missed the straightforwardness of New Englanders. Many of us are reserved, but if we become your friend, we’re your friend. In CA, there’s a lot more surface sweetness, but I found fewer genuine connections.

I missed birch trees. They aren’t fragrant, but I grew up climbing up their smooth gray-and-white branches.

birches-1Photo by Nicholas A. Tonelli via Creative Commons on Flickr.

I often toy with the idea of leaving Boston, of moving to Adelaide, Australia, or Pittsburgh, PA. Somewhere where the people are down-to-earth and where the cost of living is reasonable.

Will I be an invasive species, if I do that?

I have a lot of loved ones rooting me here, for sure…