We arrived in San Francisco almost exactly one year ago. Here is the advice I wish I had been given:
Buy large headphones
These help significantly with the auditory offensive that is Powell Street. Added bonus: less people yell at you when they can see you are clearly not listening.
This is going to be really hard
Moving countries will probably always be hard. Don’t expect it to be anything other than what it is, but work on enjoying the reality of it.
Learn to love drip coffee
For the moments when nothing but a flat white will do, go to: Cafe Bello, Contraband Coffee, Grand Prix, or Blue Bottle (but be warned that the results sometimes vary). Or just consult the Map of Decent Espresso in San Francisco.
Give every potential friendship everything you’ve got
Don’t be hesitant just on the off-chance that you may, one day, be leaving.
Living in a studio apartment can sometimes be tough. Forts give the much-needed illusion of private space.
Don’t worry about being unemployed
Or anything else, for that matter. As you suspected, everything worked out in perfect time.