Granted it wasn't the same big city I'd left behind, I was excited to get back to a place with coffee shops on nearly every block, a huge variety of food options, more to do than is possible in a year and public transportation.
It was my first time back in a legitimate big city since I went home for a friend's wedding last July and I made a swing through D.C.
Even on that trip, just six months after I'd moved to Montana, the traffic on the Beltway and I-95 make me want to crawl out of my skin.
It's amazing how quickly we can acclimate to a new environment.
There are days when this town of about 60,000 drives me absolutely batty.
Finding that just right coffee shop is a challenge. Finding one that has breakfast sandwiches is basically impossible, or at least unsuccessful so far. Restaurant options are limited, same for shopping.
D.C. will always hold a place in my heart, and I'll always appreciate a good coffee shop, but the weekend away made me realize that maybe the smaller town, where life is simpler, more intentional, is just right for me.
Here, you're less likely to see someone walking down the street talking on their iPhone with ear buds. You're less likely to see people with trendy clothes, perfect hair and makeup in super trendy bars, partly because we don't have those kind of bars.
Here, you're more likely to see people who grow their own food, or at least know where their food came from. You're more likely to see a person riding a horse alongside of the road outside town. You're more likely to see the mountains, or a storm rolling in, since there are no skyscrapers to obstruct the view.
Life in the city, for me at least, was busy, chaotic, always stuck in traffic, always on overdrive. It was possible, but it seemed so much harder, to just take life in and enjoy it.
Here, there's less distraction. People use social media, but it's not so commonplace. You're more likely to be judged based on you're understanding of the difference between a calf and a cow, versus the brand of your new shirt. (The cow thing really happened to me a few weeks ago).
There's something about it all that seems calmer, authentic and wholesome.
My mom told me a few weeks ago that family and friends all tell her that of all her kids, I'm the one they least expected to run off to Montana and raise chickens. I was the one more likely to live the big city life, everyone thought.
Life here continues to try my patience on some days and I still worry almost every weekend, that I'll run into about 20 people I know in my less than polished weekend garb. In the city you could be anonymous most days and it annoyed me, but now I worry about always going somewhere everyone knows your name and has an opinion about what you wrote that week in the paper.
But after the fun weekend in Chicago with Alicia and Eileen (who are just as spectacular in real life as they are on their blogs), I felt a small relief to be home in the place without 5-mile traffic jams, hordes of people and the place where my pup has enough acres to run that he's tired by the time he gets back in the house to stare at the chickens.
Which do you prefer, big cities or small towns? A little bit of both? Have you gone between the two and feel a little disoriented?