California native Geri Biehl and her husband, Andrew, had already started plotting their escape from New York City when 9/11 happened and sped up the process. “Everything felt so unsettled. It was a terrible time,” Geri says. “Moving closer to family just felt right.” The couple—he grew up in San Diego and she was raised in the tiny town of Camino, just east of Placerville—started married life in San Francisco. But now that they had two children, Adele and Catherine, they were looking for a smaller, more idyllic setting. Their dream town would be small enough to have a strong sense of community and close enough to a large city to afford easy access to major cultural opportunities. After much research and a few false starts (Bend, Oregon, was just too wet and cold), they found that place in Healdsburg, a small city (population 11,509) in Sonoma County.