Letter: Why leave Illinois?


To the Editor:

I grew up in a small town in southern Illinois. During a recent trip back there, I met a retired couple who moved back from Wheaton at her request. He had always lived and worked in the suburbs so small-town life is a new experience. They now have a newly rehabbed house on six acres with pocket change for real estate tax. He loves it and she wants to move back to Wheaton for its shopping and activities.

We discussed why people would leave the state when it has such a wide disparity in taxes, terrain, politics, religious fervor and pace of life. We discovered other areas and how the emigrants may not have researched their new area thoroughly. My wife and I have been looking for a new area to retire for decades. Just like my new friends, a move needs to please both people because it will be our last move! I love the mountains and the roads, she won’t drive in mountains. We don’t want to live in the big city or suburbs. We like green, so desert areas are out, as are hot summers. Hurricane and flood-prone areas are out, as was a tornado alley. Super cold and heavy snow are out, too. Our picks before we retired have already been overrun by retirees and vacationers driving up prices.

Many of those I know who moved out of state have moved back to their previous area in Illinois. Climate change will cause more to move here as droughts and storms increase.

When I was a construction engineer, I was told there’s only two good jobs: the one I left and the one I am going to. I think moving is the same thing. No matter where we live, problems exist to irritate us.

Chuck Johnson