Enjoy Being a Tourist While You’re Getting Settled in Your New Home
Awright! Your household move
is over. You’re in your new home and just getting into unpacking and putting your stuff 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 hometown.
No doubt you did some research on where you’d be going when you first decided or first learned you had to move. Now that you’re here, though, it’s time to really get acclimated …
- Go for a stroll and explore your new neighborhood – get to know the “lay of the land,” say “Hi!” to the neighbors, discover the nearest parks and recreation areas, calculate the fastest route to your children’s’ schools (either by foot or by car)
- Find the nearest businesses to cater to 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 covering local attractions that suit your fancy – art museums, historical museums (particularly those that showcase local history), sports arenas, bike and walking trails, convention centers, and theaters or auditoriums devoted primarily to stage presentations, for example
Of course, one of the speediest and easiest (if less authentic and personal) ways to explore 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 most employed online resources for ferreting out local attractions. They’ll point 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. Visit the recommended places and decide for yourself whether you like them or not.
Not really adept with the Internet or phone apps? That’s okay, just stick with actual physical exploration. That’s usually the best way to get acquainted with a place, anyhow. Stepping out and speaking with people in person generally leaves a more memorable impression than does picking information off a computer or phone screen. Still, the Internet can at least give you a preview of what’s what.
Here’s another thought. If you truly want to get acquainted with people in your new hometown, seek out local clubs and organizations that coincide with your interests, your hobbies, or your worldview and join them. You might also think about involving yourself in one or another local community service, making yourself useful to the school system, daycare centers, nursing homes, homeless shelters, rescue missions, government agencies, or whatever might best engage your talents. Funny thing about community service (and you intuitively know it’s true!): what you give to the community has a way “giving back” to you. And it won’t be long before you start feeling that your new hometown is home indeed and you’re a tourist there no more.