Karen, must admit I don't think of Redding as paradise, but that changes a little when you describe your Farmers Market.
Redding is not paradise but pretty close...if the summers were not so hot, we would have a very large population. We love it for the lakes all around us, mountains, and 4 seasons. Plus a climate mild enough to grow all year long. Good medical, good schools, excellent police force, and a lot better shopping, culture, and Farmer's Markets than 50 years ago when we moved here. We are only three and a half hours from Napa Valley and the San Francisco area, when we desire a change. Mostly though, we head up the OR coast line because we love the smaller towns and what they have to offer. In our travels, when people ask us where we are from, most often than not the reply is, " oh, we passed through Redding years ago, it was so *&%$#@ hot!" So, anymore I simply say Northern CA.
The people here are great, down to earth, hard working and for the most part, honest. When a disaster happens as it did last week, people kick in without asking, and help in any way they can. A huge fire in the foothills only about 20 minutes from us took over 70 homes, and many other structures and vehicles. The response from strangers was amazing. People with horse trailers went up to help move livestock.The fire fire fighters were well fed by local restaurants and civilians. It was amazing the outpouring of response. Our overloaded humane society was filled to capacity. The community gave over 60 bales of hay, tons of animal food of all kinds to help take care of the load. This weekend, schools are having all sorts of fund raisers collecting canned goods, more animal food, clothes and items such as soap, toothpaste, etc. 200 power lines were burned and because of the response from the companies, they are able to start letting folks back into the area today.
One thing we loved was being able to raise our family here. The kids never lacked for things to do. We were fortunate to have been able to have boats on the lake the whole time they were growing up, and if not on one of the lakes, they were in the mountains skiing, fishing or hiking. Pretty cool.