Bill Leslie's Carolina Conversations

Best & worst states

Posted March 23, 2009

How many states have you lived in? What was the best state? What was the worst and why? Please discuss.

A recent Pew Research survey found that 53% of us have never lived outside the state where we were born. However, 15% have lived in four or more states.

I’ve lived in three states. North Carolina gets my “best” vote by far.  I was born here and have lived most of my life here. During my radio career I worked for nine months in Norfolk.  I also worked in radio for three years in Houston. I really loved Texas. The people were incredibly friendly with the exception of a few wild and wacky drivers on the Katy Freeway.  Virginia was okay.  Norfolk was not nearly as nice a place as Raleigh but at the time it paid more. If I could pick a place to live in Virginia it would probably be Charlottesville. If I could pick a place to live in Texas it would likely be in the Hill Country around Austin.

I didn’t like the weather in Houston. The humidity was horrible and the mosquitoes were tenacious.  I loved the restaurants in Texas. From Tex-Mex to brisket the Lone Star State had a lot to offer on the culinary front. Tidewater  Virginia had terrific seafood. One of my favorite restaurants in Virginia Beach was Henry’s. I don’t believe this once popular seafood eatery is open anymore.

What about you and your life journey? What were your favorite stops and states along the way?


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  • msnfnp Mar 27, 2009

    I was born in NY, raised in Indiana, lived in Mississippi, South Carolina, Illinois, North Carolina, back to Indiana and then we came home to North Carolina. We love the people and the climate here. No comparison to anyplace else I've ever lived in the USA.

  • rahrah07 Mar 25, 2009

    I came from Rochester, Ny. I like NC better for the weather and such, but I REALLY miss the food. Sahlen's hot dogs, abbots frozen custard and the pizza, oh the pizza. I also miss roads and highways that go in generally straight lines instead of loops... and last but not least I miss Lake Ontario...the things called lakes down here look like ponds to me! But even though I love all that and I can't tell you specifically what I like about NC, I like it best. We considered moving to Dallas, TX and spent a week there, but it was so crowded and the traffic would have driven me NUTS

  • bleslie Mar 25, 2009

    What a diverse and delightful group we have here! Thanks for sharing your nomadic stories.

  • snowcat92 Mar 25, 2009

    I was born in Upper Michigan, lived in Georgia, Kansas, Texas, and North Carolina (and a few foreign countries along the way). My hometown rests on the Wisconsin border, and I have always loved Wisconsin. Life is at a different pace and the people I have encountered were generally friendly. I particularly love the city of Green Bay and have been a Packers fan since birth. My husband and I would live there if we could find jobs in our fields, but he thinks the deer season is too short.

  • jguelich Mar 25, 2009

    Bill, I was born at Cherry Point Marine Airbase(Havelock) in 1959 and my father was transferred to New River (Camp Lejuene) shortly after. At age eight, he received orders to Camp Smith, just above Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.We left California, which in the 60's was every bit about love & peace, Hawaii was paradise!
    The first thing your senses recognize walking off the airplane is the smell of flowers in the air-truely tropic. From there, barefoot was the norm - school included. We lived three years there and then returned to Havelock. I loved the weather and the California girls (lots in Hawaii) and the eduacation from all the history the islands present. One thing, though, if you ever plan to visit, Hawaii folk are very territorial and basically do not like mainlanders - tread lightly. Also, if you ever liked "Hawaii 5-O" , I saw them film the show on numerous occassions. Ate at Don Ho's restaurant, too. Hawaii is superb, but my heart and home will always be NC

  • bbrunos Mar 24, 2009

    I am originally from San Diego, CA and moved to Wake Forest in 2004 and I absolutely LOVED that state, the people, food, scenery you name it, unfortunately, we had to relocate to Houston, Texas. This state is nice, but will not compare to N.C. or California....

  • carolinamissy Mar 24, 2009

    I was born in Durham. I was raised in Virginia on Lake Gaston and moved back to NC at 21. They are the only two places I have ever lived and I love them both.

  • eyesblue Mar 24, 2009

    I was born in Piedmont North Carolina...Salisbury, and now live near Clayton. I've lived in Fla (east coast and west coast), Louisiana, and NW Georgia...up near Chattanooga and down closer to Atlanta. NC will always be home and has lots of good points. I do have an oceanfront timeshare in Va Beach, and I have to say there's alot of great things going for that area. If anyone thinks I-40 traffic is's only because they've never lived in south Fla and had to deal with I-95 from the Palm Beaches to Miami, nor the Atlanta metro area where rush hour starts at 6 am. and lasts until 10, and starts again at 4pm and lasts until 7 or later. Nothing like 6-8 lanes of cars coasting at

  • Wags Mar 24, 2009

    I spent my first 28 years in NW PA. I left there in 1984 on a quest to find work. I had been laid off for 2 years. (there was a recession then also...interest rates 20+). Got in the car one January morning and started driving. Two days later I found myself in raleigh. I found work, called my wife and told her to start packing...we are moving to NC. She said "WHERE"??? I drove back, rented a U-Haul, packed the furniture, wife and three kids and here we are. Anyway, I have now been here for 25 years and never plan to move again. (I don't know how I endured the snow up there. They averaged 100 inches a year)

  • Riverracer8 Mar 24, 2009

    I've never lived anywhere but NC - I've lived in 3 different places in NC and love them all. I can't imagine living anywhere else!




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