Moving is always a life changing event in my opinion. Just sleeping for the first time in a new house is a completely new experience. But we didn’t only move house, we also moved to another city. I never expected the changes to be big, but they are!
Change #1: Getting adjusted to the location (city center)
In our old house we didn’t live in the city center. If we wanted to go to the city center we would go by bus (10 minutes), car (10 minutes on a calm day) or by bike (about 15/20 minutes).
In any case you would need a) some time on your hands b) money for bus or parking tickets and/or c) motivation to go biking.
So while this is by no means a far distance, in practice I would just not get out as much. And when I did I would either have a clear goal of my visit or feel obliged to stay longer.
So every time I would go out with my friends and I really didn’t feel like it, I ended up going anyway (because I promised) and ending up staying longer than I wanted because otherwise it would feel like a waste of time to go aaaaalllll the way up and down the road.
It sounds so silly now, but this is just how it was.
We live in the city center (right on the edge) now, so I can just walk to the shops any time I want.
This is ideal!
Because now I go run an errand every time I need to, without worrying about having the time or not. It is just so much more approachable.
And a big upside is that when there is an event I want to visit, but I’m not sure if I’m gonna like it, I can just go. And if I like it I stay and if not I’m home within 5 minutes. So I no longer feel forced to like things and stay longer than I want to.
Plus I don’t feel like I miss anything. I can go to pretty much every activity if I feel like it.
Change #2: Riding a bike
I’ve always had bikes. To go to school, or to the train station at a later age. I believe the Netherlands are even known abroad for biking wherever we go. It is just very common to bike anywhere.
But personally I was always hesitant to use my bike. When we lived in Arnhem I hardly ever rode my bike.
It took a lot of time getting it out of the shed, out of the garden and then through a big gate. By the time I got from inside the house to having my bike on the road I opened and closed four different doors already. So in the end I didn’t ride anymore.
Today I ride my bike to work every day (rainy and lazy days aside).
The road to work is not that long, the weather is pretty nice at the moment and I really like the fresh air in the morning it turns out.
Even when I don’t have to go to work I’m tempted to ride the bike more, where I would’ve taken the car in the old situation. I sometimes go grocery shopping by bike. Who knew?
Getting my bike to the road is no struggle anymore, which I think helps a lot. I hope I can keep this up, it’s healthier as well. But I do hate rain, so fall and winter are a challenge.
Change #3: Getting out more
In Arnhem I was at home a lot. Although I like strolling by the river there, I really didn’t do it that often. I just didn’t get out much to be honest.
But the renovation is pushing me outside.
Whether I sit in our garden to escape the dust, eat out because we have no real kitchen or showing friends around in the new city. I am out of the house a lot more than I used to.
These are just a few of the biggest changes for me so far. There are more, but I will save them for another post.
What changes affected you most when moving to a new city?