Just Moved? Get to Know Your New City

Relish Being a Tourist While You’re Getting Settled in Your New Home

family with moving boxesAwright! Your household move is finished. You’re in your new home and just getting into unpacking and putting everything away. That’s a lot of work, for sure. But there is one more thing you should be doing. And the quicker you do it, the cheerier you’ll be. You should be getting to know your new locale.

Certainly you looked into where you’d be going when you first set your mind or first discovered you had to move. Now that you’re here, though, it’s time to really get your bearings …
  • Walk around and explore your new neighborhood – get to know the “lay of the land,” meet and greet the neighbors, locate the closest parks and recreation areas, determine the most direct route to your children’s’ schools (either by foot or by car)
  • Find the closest businesses to meet your needs – supermarkets, shopping malls, gas stations, movie theaters coffee shops, fast food places, restaurants, libraries, bookstores, and the like
  • Visit the closest “Welcome Center” and pick up brochures highlighting local attractions that appeal to you – art museums, historical museums (particularly those partial to local history), sports arenas, bike and walking trails, convention centers, and theaters or auditoriums that specialize in stage presentations, for instance
internet compatable devicesBut then, one of the quickest and easiest (if less authentic and personal) ways to investigate your new community isn’t by foot or by car – it’s by way of the Internet. Google, Google Maps, Yelp, and Citysearch are a few of today’s preferred online resources for ferreting out local attractions. They’ll lead you to^pinpoint}78} all the most popular gathering places your community has to offer. Don’t just take the word of online reviews, though. Personally check out the recommended places and decide for yourself whether you like them or not.

Not really comfortable with the Internet or phone apps? That’s fine, just stay with actual physical exploration. That’s usually the best way to get to know a place, anyhow. Getting out and about and talking with people in person generally leaves a much stronger impression than does picking information off a computer or phone screen. Still, the Internet can at least clue you in to what’s available.

Here’s another thought. If you honestly want to get acquainted with people in your new hometown, check out local clubs and organizations that reflect your interests, your hobbies, or your worldview and join them. You might also consider involving yourself in this or that local community service, making yourself useful to the school system, daycare centers, nursing homes, homeless shelters, rescue missions, government agencies, or whatever might best exercise your talents. Funny thing about community service (and you instinctively know it’s true!): what you give to the community has a way “giving back” to you. And it’ll be no time at all before you start feeling that your new hometown is home indeed and you’re a tourist there no more.