A New Place

It's kind of fun moving to new places all the time. I do it a lot for work; I work a few months here, a few months there... and now that I am home for a little while, I have lived in two different places and am now moving to my third place today. I am a planner kind of person, so before going to a new place, there are a few things I research.

(1) Running Clubs -- I don't join the running clubs, but I have found that they can be an excellent source of knowledge about where to run, races and other running related things. I found out about the Ohlone 50k that I volunteered for through a running club in Oakland; I found out about where to run in NYC through a running club there. As you probably know, runners are fun people and like to talk about, you guessed it, running. So I try to find a runner and ask them questions about what I want to know!

(2) Running Routes -- Even if I don't find a person or club to get advice from, one of the first things I do is get on Google Maps or Dailymile and find out where the good running routes are near my new place. A few things I look for: (a) trails, (b) routes where there are minimal street crossings and (c) routes that have a nice view. For Santa Cruz, I can run in the mountains or on the ocean cliffs. I am looking forward to both, as well as finding new routes.

Where I will be running this week.

(3) The Library -- I always find out (a) where the nearest library is and (b) what the card policy is. In Missouri when I was working, if you were not a local, you could pay $15 per year to have a card. In Oakland, cards are available to any CA residents. In Santa Cruz, if you have another CA Library card, you can have visitor privileges. Luckily, there is a library about a mile from the new place!

(4) The Burrito -- I always say, if there is not a burrito within walking distance, I don't want to live there. Luckily, there is a taqueria only about a half a mile away. Yes, this is a criteria.

(5) The Grocer -- I also like to walk for groceries. I found no less than 5 grocery stores (including a natural food store and a neighborhood bodega) less than a mile away.

2 = running route, 3 = library, 4 = burrito, 5 = grocery store (scale = from 2 to 3 is about 2.5 miles)

I always start with these. Of course there are man other things I like to research, but these are the basics!

What do you always find out before you move to / visit a new place?


  1. Wow, you are in a great location! I lived in suburbia for 6 years and hated now I could not walk to ANYTHING. The only thing that was walking distance away was a crappy Walgreens. So when I moved, I wanted to be close to work, close to running paths, and close to a grocery store. My place is close to all of things - and is also close to a church as well, which is not something I factored into my decision, but something I appreciate it as I can walk there instead of driving! :)

  2. First I check school districts :) Then, running routes, running stores, Whole Foods and Trader Joes type stores and parks.

    I envy your running spot!

  3. I really value having things in walking distance... parks, stores, restaurants... we try hard to be a one-car family, and so far it's worked out! I definitely check out the running routes, too. You've got so much out your doorstep- sounds like a perfect location for you!

  4. What a great post! I'm so jealous you will be running on the beach. I miss the beach so much! Living near it (even if it was only for a short while) was such a privilege that I did not take for granted!

    I always look for a library too! DEFINITELY! :)

  5. Ah! It sounds like you are in a great location for running and delicious tacos! If I'm going to a place that has public transit, I try to find a place that's close to a metro stop or a good bus line. I also usually look for good running routes and for places where I'm going to be for a fair amount of time a great cafe where I can either do some work or just hang out with a glass of wine.

  6. OK, you have my undying loyalty for the library shout-out--wise woman! (Um, yeah, I'm a librarian.....)

    Those runs will be gorgeous, too!

  7. When I'm traveling I always look to see what kind of vegetarian restaraunts there are that will determine how many clif bars I have to pack.

  8. Wow what an amazing location! That new running route looks like it will be amazing. Location was super important to me when we moved. We don't live in a very walkable city but I really wanted to be a SHORT driving distance from work, the grocery store etc. I really need to break out my bike more this summer too as the grocery store is only about 1 mile away (but it's a STEEP climb coming home!)

  9. Looks like a great place! I love that the burrito is a criteria. I always look for a library too. I always check to see if there's a farmer's market nearby too.

  10. Looks pretty darn good to me!

    I look for shopping, running routes, libraries, parks, beaches... pretty much the same as you.

    When living in the U.S. I am on the lookout for Trader Joe's and Whole Foods too.

  11. It sounds like you are going to have everything you need right at your fingertips. I've only lived in three cities and my main concern when we moved here was finding the right house I wanted in a nice neighborhood. Everything is within 10 minutes and we are just north of the city so it's nice and quiet.

  12. I love this post, because it's a little peak into who you are and what's important to you. When I move, the things we have looked for are (a) distance to public transportation for Sweets' commute, (b) distance to my office (which is in the suburbs, so it limits what part of the city we can live) and (c) places to walk the dog (having a nearby park is bonus). When we look to buy a home in a few years, the above things will still remain true, but we will also be interested in communities that provide (d) good schools, (e) excellent school and club sports and (f) kid-friendly activities sponsored by the park district, community, etc.

  13. That looks like a great location. I would love to be able to walk to all of those things. I've lived pretty much within a few miles for my whole life (except college when I was 18 miles away and a semester in DC), so I have no experience. What a fun adventure.

  14. So excited for you! I can't believe you get to run on such amazing routes! Lucky:) Good tips on things to look for too. When I move, I think about schools for the boys, nearby grocery stores, yard size, etc.


Thanks for commenting! Any suggestions, tips or praise you have is always welcome!