To “Live As A Traveler” means fully appreciating wherever you are. This translates to enjoying your “hometown” and neighborhood, not taking nearby for granted. There are interesting and kind people right next door, across the street, around the corner. No need for traveling far to discover new experiences and relationships. Just keep it local!
In our community neighbors share fences. Young children sell sweet lemonade and dog lovers commune as they walk their animal charges. With a school nearby, families descend on the playground pulling red wagons, riding bikes or walking, tightly holding hands to cross the street. We’ve all suffered the occasional “toilet papering” of trees. In this semi-urban setting, we’ve seen hawks resting on telephone poles, arriving in the spring. Neighbors wave or sometimes roll down the car window to say a brief “Hi”. How do people interact where you live?
Our neighbors of seven years moved last week. Because of their initial outreach we experienced a deeper sense of community over time. Sometimes they included us in holiday gatherings and we reciprocated. Soon the kids came over to play with our older son’s toys (he was at college). Our relationship was not intimate per se but we counted on each other. And, it was just plain fun to visit now and then and catch up on one another’s stories. Who might you get to know “across the street”?
Here are a few suggestions on how to connect and enjoy the Locals nearby:
- Devise a walking route and head outside at least once a week!
- Not sure what to talk about with neighbors? Here are some conversational prompts:
What brought you to the neighborhood?
Where else have you lived?
Tell me about your family (or who else lives with you)?
What keeps you busy during the day?
Is there any thing we might help you with?
- Begin! Host a gathering of some sort, even if it’s just with one family across the street: a Summer ice cream social, Fall “Apple Pie Potluck, Hot chocolate and Snow shoveling on the first snow day or “Weeding and Wine” in the spring.
- If there’s a Neighborhood Association show up to gatherings and or meetings.
There’s no pressure to become best friends with your neighbors; rather, it’s about exploring the lives and area around you, just as you would if traveling. Frankly, it’s good to set some perimeters and be very thoughtful in your actions. These are people physically occupying similar space so maintaining good relations is important.
Engaging others locally with curiosity and kindness will enrich your life. Go Local: Start in your Neighborhood!