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Summer is the season of moving, and Americans do it more than any other country

DANIELLE KURTZLEBEN, HOST:

Americans move more frequently than just about any other people in the world, and summer is the time when many of them do it. So this summer, WEEKEND EDITION will bring you stories from across the country about the joy and stress of moving. We start with Arthur Hidalgo, who just graduated with a medical degree from Tulane University in New Orleans. He just moved with his wife, Mary, and their dog to the Los Angeles area for a residency program at the Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.

ARTHUR HIDALGO: This was my first choice, so pretty lucky. So we were pretty excited about the whole move. I'm from New Orleans. My wife's from New York, but we both lived in New Orleans together for the last four years. We pretty much took I-10 west the entire time. We went past Houston and San Antonio on the first day. And then the second night, we stopped in Phoenix, and then we completed the drive to LA on the third day.

I signed up for alerts from HotPads and Zillow. I mean, I just kind of monitored it from afar in New Orleans. And, you know, when I would send out interest in a place, the landlord would be like, OK, cool, when are you coming to see it? And I had to say, oh, I can't see it. Luckily, a college roommate of mine lives just, like, five minutes north of where I was looking to rent. And so the places that I really liked, he was able to see for me and, like, give his thoughts and meet with the prospective landlord. But, you know, if we didn't have him, it would have been a much different process, I would say.

Our rent is almost exactly twice as much as it was in New Orleans. We pay 3,500 here. So that was a definite conversation between me and my wife. You know, she's employed, and I will be making money now for the first time since med school started, so I could, you know, kind of contribute more.

We decided to go with U-Haul U-Box, and you basically go to a U-Haul location, load it and then it ships. The quotes that I got for moving were pretty insane, between 2 and 3,000, and our U-Box ended up being, you know, 1,500. I got a notification yesterday that it arrived, but I'm not I would say emotionally ready to go unpack again.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

HIDALGO: In LA, it seems like there's everything here. There's pickleball five minutes from my house. There's Target, Walmart but also, you know, mom-and-pop shops on my block. I kind of like the blend of things.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

HIDALGO: I don't think there's any place quite like New Orleans, for better or for worse, right? And so it is a very unique experience living there. And so we'll definitely miss that, the festivals and the food scene. But sometimes you just need to go to Target, right?

KURTZLEBEN: That's Dr. Art Hidalgo, formerly of New Orleans and now a resident of Hermosa Beach, Calif. If you are moving this summer and have a story to tell, email us at weekend@npr.org and put moving in the subject line. We might contact you for more details.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by an NPR contractor. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.

Danielle Kurtzleben
Danielle Kurtzleben is a political correspondent assigned to NPR's Washington Desk. She appears on NPR shows, writes for the web, and is a regular on The NPR Politics Podcast. She is covering the 2020 presidential election, with particular focuses on on economic policy and gender politics.
Fernando Narro
Matthew Schuerman
Matthew Schuerman has been a contract editor at NPR's Weekend Edition since October 2021, overseeing a wide range of interviews on politics, the economy, the war in Ukraine, books, music and movies. He also occasionally contributes his own stories to the network. Previously, he worked at New York Public Radio for 13 years as reporter, editor and senior editor, and before that at The New York Observer, Village Voice, Worth and Fortune. Born in Chicago and educated at Harvard College and Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, he now lives in the New York City area.