I've got a nice house with 1/2 acre yard and pool that is for rent at Portsmouth if you are interested. Let me know.
I grew up in Chesapeake and go to UVA now. Good public schools include Great Bridge and Hickory areas within Chesapeake and a bunch of schools within Virginia Beach. Avoid norfolk/portsmouth public schools.Chesapeake's nice. There are parts of Portsmouth that have gotten much nicer over the last few years. Downtown has been revitalized pretty nicely and the Port Norfolk area (where I lived for 3yrs during residency) was nice as well (benefited greatly from the 146 bypass). Virginia public schools aren't noted for their great quality anywhere that I know of (at least in the Hampton Roads area), but if I'd had school age kids at the time, I might have been a little more finicky about where I lived based on that criteria.
I grew up in Chesapeake and go to UVA now. Good public schools include Great Bridge and Hickory areas within Chesapeake and a bunch of schools within Virginia Beach. Avoid norfolk/portsmouth public schools.
1) the level 1 would be Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, a pretty nice facility also used by Eastern VA Med schoolPortsmouth is not all that bad. But if you have to be there then Chesapeake is a nice place to stay. Its not too hard to get to the Naval Medical Center, just be sure to get off the interstate before the tunnel or you're screwed. You won't make that mistake twice.
The hospital is a good one. I spent a couple of years in the ER there. There is some politicking but not as bad as Bethesda, I had a buddy there and I would much rather be at Portsmouth. There are a lot of clinics in the area and most of the ER docs I worked with did some work at the trauma center in Norfolk, I forget the name, because it was level one and the Naval hospital was only a two.
The only thing I really did not like about Portsmouth was the mosquitoes and then the grocery clerks constantly complaining about their job. The one thing about Hampton Roads, customer service sucks; but you get used to it.
There are lots of great historical sites to see. I really enjoyed that part. You can have a lot of fun being stationed at NMCP, I know, it could be worse.
I can see what you mean about buying a car or something, but I thought that's expected everywhere. I lived in Chesapeake for 10+ years, which is more "Southern" I guess than much of the surrounding area; so I'm sure that had something to do with it. The 757 definitely has its share of ****bags, as do all places, but from my experience someone is more likely to let you merge in front of them / say hello in passing / other nice things compared to other places. Of course, I have a hometown bias.Generally hospitable? Maybe it was the weather? The only place in all of Virginia, that was not a tourist stop, I got good service was at P.F. Chang's in Virginia Beach. I would go to a Car lot and have to hunt for a salesman; I thought those guys worked on commission. Realtors were snotty and condescending. Since being away I have tried to contact some government offices out there and they are just not helpful or nice. Don't get me wrong, I know a lot of good and happy people out there and I would be happy to go back.
Maybe it was Portsmouth? That is where I lived and where I spent most of my time. Where were you?