Moving to a new city is hard. Making new friends, finding new places (grocery store; dog park; to bike; to run; mall; library; favorite restaurant; favorite coffee shop) and getting a new routine is hard. I moved to Dallas from Minneapolis with my brother in August 2008. It was a difficult transition but I had my brother and 15 plus coworkers in the same age bracket with somewhat similar interests. It still took me 6 months to stop hating Dallas. In Minneapolis I was very family oriented, I hung out a lot with my sister, parents, grandparents, and aunts. I only had two close friends. Then that was all gone. It got better, I made friends. Lots of friends. My focus from family moved to biking, running, trying new restaurants, trying new recipes, and hanging out with friends. After 3 years, I really liked Dallas, dare I say, loved Dallas. Life, and the economy, happened and I am now living in Cleveland. It’s different this time, no brother or co-workers with similar interests. I never hated Cleveland like Dallas, just more neutral feeling. It’s been a little over 7 months, it has not been easy but I am starting to feel a little settled. I truly believe when moving somewhere new, you have to be active. Even if the situation is temporary, make that best of it. Below are some ways I found that helps with the getting settling:
Volunteer: I volunteer A LOT. Lately, I have volunteered with HandsOn Northeast Ohio, Cleveland Marathon, Ingenuity Festival, West Side Market Parade & Festival, West Side Market Centennial Gala, Cleveland Public Television, Beck Center Theatre, and the Ohio Vineyard Run. It’s a great way to see different parts of the city, meet new people and hear about new things (like Cleveland International Film Festival). I also think being a part of the community helps to make the new city feel more like home.
Meetup: I love meetup. I am in thirteen groups, only active in three and assistant organizer in two. It’s a great way to meet people and see what’s going on around town
Yelp: Yelp is a great way to find new restaurants and events. Here in Cleveland yelp even hosts some events, there is a Cleveland International Supper Club that meets once a month. Lately I have been trying out chai tea the high-rated coffee shops. My next ‘project’, I’m going to go around to the different Vietnamese restaurants to find the best pho and Vietnamese coffee.
Twitter: I follow restaurant and groups in my area. That’s how I found out about Beer Week (October), Restaurant Week (November) and different festivals.
Putzy-ing around the internet I found: Science Café meets once a month at Garden Market; astronomy lecture at Baldwin Wallace one Friday a month and at the Museum of Natural History one Thursday a month; The Happy Dog has authors come in to speak, classical music, and physics lectures; most cities have community classes, I’m taking a Lebanese cooking class and majority of people are in my age bracket; most Lululemon store have free yoga classes on Sundays; Pet-ique has monthly yappy hour during the summer; Museum of Contemporary Art has lectures, coming up is about ‘Just what makes contemporary art so appealing’. Just to list a few.
Do you have any suggests of what to do in a new city?