I could not agree more with this statement. I live in a 'food desert' so to speak. There is a Safeway across the street. Their produce and service suck. They have little to no organic. One thing I really liked living in York pa was a small organic store. Their prices and selection were excellent; they even had a huge selection of vitamins and literature. Safeway (the one here) routinely list things right before expiration or sell potatoes that are already sprouted, etc. Without getting into all the politics of it there was a guy in line one time and he said something like 'it's these damn unions we have to get rid of, that's why this store is X, he was angry and unfortunately rude to the staff'. After the guy left the employees literally said 'we don't care what you think, don't shop here'. They are union, and I agree that a union is needed to counterbalance corporate power, it's just shame that the side effect can be total and complete apathy on part of the employees. Yes I've also thought more about the tornado question. I believe the media only shows those areas designed to scare the daylights out of you. I've also read that the dangerous place to be is in a trailer, in a house you are much safer. In reality in a tornado situation I would probably just need to stay indoors or in a basement, etc. It's probably more of the news media programming than an actual reality that a tornado would cause me any harm. In an idle setting I would live in a area where I could ride my bike most of the time. Where the driving is not insane like it is here, in the WABASH area, and organic produce is readily available. It is available here but you have to drive 18 miles on the kill or be killed highway to get to Trader Joes, there is also a Whole Foods but that is in the city of Baltimore. I'm open to driving, and actually don't mind it, like when I lived in Pa. I do like using my bike but living in a place where I can ride my bike to most things might be too expensive. I posted on another fourm called city-data, it's a forum that's all about cities and moving. They have forums for every state and every city; it's a great resource. Anyway the consensus when I posted 2 years ago (yes I've been trying to figure this out for quite a while) was to move away from any coast and move to the south or the middle of the country, avoiding all coasts. I have thought about Portland at one point but I figured since it was on the coast it would be too expensive. I also probably looked on craigslist to see sample rents, since statistics will only get you so far. That is one of my main barometers for cost, craigslist. Their methodology for cost of living might be different than what I might consider, since some things aren't as relevant to me. My number one thing is can I afford it and can I get around and not have to live on top of people. I have severe anxiety and I don't like living in claustrophobic environments. For example I will not live in an apt complex, I will only live in small 24 or less units type things. I also will not live on the bottom level anymore because all you here is STOMP STOMP STOMP STOMP. For example here where I live I can not sleep in the room that is designated as the bedroom because if I hear any noise at all I will not shift out of hyper-vigilant mode and allow sleep. I don't need to live in or next to a corn field per say, just not in a congested area. I do believe that it's just like this here since it's east coast and the high population density. If you look at the country as a whole most of the country does not live like this, at least that is my take on it. I tried to respond to everyone; I would respond by name its just I'm so tired I don't remember who said what and I don't want to have to go back and figure it out. I do appreciate everyone for their suggestions. I will also keep this thread updated as any new information or suggestions come my way, hopefully I can bounce it off some of the members here. I would also like to add that I first state with the states that do not tax SS, then I move from there. How it is even moral to tax people on SS is beyond me. I also look at taxes in general, states that tax food, which is also totally immoral. TN looked like an ideal state but their sales tax is almost 10%.