Daily prompt: Think again
I live in a town called Palmerston North in the North Island of New Zealand. I moved here 18 months ago when I got married – I surely relocated for love because Palmerston North was definitely not a place that I ever wanted to live in. Again. I lived here as a University student aged 18-20 which was a rough time in my life. Everything negative that happened in those years, I associated with this town. So I assumed I would put up living here but I wouldn’t really like it. Not really a smart way to approach living in a new town I have to say! I’m glad that my assumption was wrong. So wrong.
Palmy (to the locals) isn’t the most picturesque place in New Zealand. It’s mostly flat and pretty ordinary really. The weather is terrible – wind and rain are our constant companion, especially wind. Sun we don’t see as much as other parts of the country. John Cleese once called Palmerston North “the suicide capital of New Zealand”. That’s pretty dire, right? But he didn’t get to know it.
To know Palmy is to love it. Well OK, I’ll never love it as much as I love my home region, Hawke’s Bay, but that’s a whole different story! Seriously though, I was pretty apprehensive about living here, expecting a big grey cloud and nothing at all interesting. So wrong.
My life has changed a lot since those student days almost two decades ago (eeek!) when I formed those first opinions of Palmy. I have changed, my needs have changed, and so has this town. Now I see a town that is so easy to get around. We live on one side of town, school is on the other (9.5km away) – that trip takes only about 14 minutes. That is a ‘no problem’ commute although many think we’re mad living ‘so far away’ from school! I understand ‘community’ in a school for the first time and we have a great church. The sun does shine and in fact my first few months here provided a freakishly unusual heat wave so I was quite at home. Five minutes from our home there is a river and multiple parks all with established walking tracks. There is a University, Army base and Air Force base so locals are used to people coming and going which helps with settling in (when you’re ready to get over all your own issues that is, again, another post!). There’s a plaza (mall) which makes running errands a breeze – but best avoided on weekends and school holidays unless you want to be over run by teenagers and university students!
I guess what I’m trying to say is that I assumed living in Palmy was going to be a bit sh*t. Now I know, it’s not and I’m glad to be able to change my mind.
This post is in response to The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt: Tell us about a time you made a false assumption about a person or a place — how did they prove you wrong?