My Guide to a New City

How to Love a New City

I don't think it is any secret that it took me a long time to love Tucson. I feel confident saying
it took about 1.5 years until I truly began to love this city. Even though it took me that long this time around, I am more than excited to start my next journey in a new city and try out these tips and tricks I've thought out and applied. I also am a firm believer in the fact that it takes almost 2 years to really feel like a new city is "home." Perhaps that number could go down though if you are living their consistently. (Being in college with breaks made it so I was never here for longer than 5 months at a time until this past year.) So without further adieu, here is my guide to loving a new city.

1. Make friends with a local and a newcomer as soon as you can. The local will help you find
all the best places that others may not be aware of and the newcomer will help calm your nerves
because you are both in the same boat.

2. Have a car (unless you live in a big city like NYC or Chicago). Having my car was a godsent and really changed everything for me. I was able to explore, have some alone time when I needed it, and it gave me the independence and freedom I need with my kind of personality.

3. Eat at unique places and try out cool bars as often as possible. These places show you bits and pieces of the people who call the city their home and you can get to know some fun characters. Plus, trying out new food places is heaven on earth.

4. Volunteer at local events. I am such a big fan of this one. I have loved volunteering in Tucson because I have gotten to know some of the people who make this city tick and keep it running. You also get to see people's hearts when you are both volunteering for a greater good.

5. Mentally and physically prepare for whatever weather lies ahead. Here in Tucson, I was definitely not prepared for the heat. My first two years here were almost primarily spent whining about it instead of realizing this is what it is and adjusting myself. If you can mentally prepare yourself for the weather ahead of time, your whole state of mind improves. (I'm speaking from so much personal experience here, it's insane) And also physically prepare by bringing/investing in appropriate clothing!

6. Open your mind. At first, I was not smitten with the landscape here in the desert. I thought it was dry, dusty and overall, pretty ugly. (It's hard to beat Northern California and I've been spoiled) But once I forced myself to see that every city has its own unique feel and look and that doesn't make one better than the other, I was able to love the cactus and the desert landscape. I'm now so stinkin' obsessed with the mountains and saguaro's here, it isn't even funny. 

7. Have the heart of an explorer. Go out and explore your new city as often as possible! Go take long walks, get lost, meet a stranger, document your adventures for another day and ultimately, enjoy yourself.

8. Check out the local attractions. One thing I can say, without hesitation, was that I have done almost every classic Tucson thing you can possibly do. Biosphere 2? done. Mount Lemmon? done. Hike Tumamoc? done. Kartchner Caverns? done. Bisbee/Tombstone? Done. Gem show? done. Botanical gardens? done. Zoo? done. And the list goes on. Take advantage of all of the wonderful attractions in your own backyard! (Taking visitors with you is the best way!) 

Do you have any tips and tricks to add? 
If you are moving or you just want to bookmark this for when you move someday, 
I hope this helps. :)


Allie said...

I LOVE this advice! I wish I would have read it when I first moved to Chicago :) xx

Allie said...

Yay! I'm excited to apply it to wherever I head next!