I’ve lived in Philadelphia for nearly three months, and, while I won’t call myself a local, I feel as though I’ve finally begun the process of settling into something of a routine. I have “my” coffee shop, a few favorite vintage stores, a reliable bookstore — those haunts that make me feel less like someone passing through and more as if I actually live here.
Moving causes us to go through so many transitions in such a short period of time. We begin as tourists in our new cities or towns and for many that can be a feeling we’d like to see pass as soon as possible, we’re eager to earn the stamp of ‘local’, to find our place and begin a new kind of life. There’s a comfort in community and in being recognized by your neighbors, and I at least enjoy the feeling of being at “home,” of having a home base, wherever that may be. I still spend my weekends seeking out new experiences, but the urgency to know has lessened. There’s time, I’ll see it. That is, until, visitors arrive.
This past weekend, I hosted my very first Philly house guest: my mom, and unlike past visits when I’ve lived in a city for a couple of years, this time I had the chance to be less of a tour guide and more of a fellow tourist. The perfect excuse to slap on some sneakers and get a good dose of Philadelphia history, to trek out to the country to see a more rural Pennsylvania, and see all those things topping ‘Top 10’ lists across the Internet. That need to explore is one I don’t want to lose, sometimes it just takes an out-of-towner to remind us that breaking free of routine and being a tourist again isn’t a bad thing.
Where have you explored lately? I’d love to know!
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