Ms. Halici gets that. She’s pregnant with her second child and the family is moving to a longer term rental in Culver City. She says it’s only a matter of time before 60-degree temperatures cease to feel like T-shirt weather. “My New York transplant friends all say, ‘Watch, you’ll become sensitive to the cold very soon,’” she said.
But the cultural differences will require more of an adjustment. “In New York, everyone is very straightforward, and they don’t have any qualms saying no to something,” Ms. Halici said. “In L.A., it’s ‘Yeah, that sounds great.’” Then they don’t show. She wonders if people are just trying to be nice or if the traffic (and lack of super accessible public transportation) makes committing to plans legitimately difficult.
Samantha Allen, 28, a home editor at Forbes Advisor, moved to Denver from Park Slope last November. She still walks faster than her friends and often wears all black, which is not common in Colorado.
Her New York directness also hasn’t always paid off. In Brooklyn, she successfully negotiated a rent reduction from her landlord when she discovered her apartment’s windows weren’t up to code. In Denver, she tried the same when the construction of a Hot Chicken restaurant in her building created agonizing noise. “They were like, ‘Rent’s not up for negotiation,’” Ms. Allen said. “I thought, if you can negotiate rent in New York, can’t you do that anywhere?”
But some of the cultural changes are refreshing. “Here ambition is focused on elevating your lifestyle, like climbing the next fourteener,” she said in reference to Colorado’s mountain peaks that rise above 14,000 feet. “Here, where you work isn’t even a secondary question.”
Yet she has actively sought out fellow New York transplants. When moving, she turned to a Facebook Group called I Moved to Denver. “It was a safety net for me, knowing that so many New Yorkers were coming here,” Ms. Allen said. Whenever she met fellow former New Yorkers, they “bonded immediately.”
The Facebook group was created by Laura Young, a New York expat who also runs New Denizen, a blog that covers Denver life “from a New Yorker’s perspective.” To Ms. Young, 40, this means having “strong and discerning opinions” when it comes to food, culture and the arts. She said that “when ex-New Yorkers in Denver talk to each other, the highest compliment would be, ‘This place could easily make it in New York City.’”