Construction workers having lunch on site

Where We Can Be Ourselves

Nov 21

Many of our interviews were with people who had come here from the mainland or other parts of the world. For each of them, Hobart solved a problem.

For philosopher and author John Armstrong, who had come here from London and Melbourne, cities ruled by perceived status and ridiculous real estate prices, Hobart was “the end of envy.” It is relatively easy to live a comfortable life here, without constantly comparing yourself to others.

Others sought a place of relative calm after mad years in the big city. Some wanted to reconnect with nature in a place that also happened to have fabulous restaurants and a great symphony. Some wanted a place where they could get to know their neighbours and let their kids walk safely to school.

But the majority of you who chose Hobart chose it because you could pursue your passions and obsessions, your most honest self, in a city that encourages it. In Hobart you don’t have to pretend to be someone you’re not.

Hobart is not for everyone. You used words like fake and pompous to describe people who would have trouble fitting in here. When you spoke of people who succeed here, they tend to come for reasons other than money or status. They work less, or they work more at something they really love — rather than feeling forced to follow a path they don’t really enjoy, to achieve what ordinary cities might call success.

Among other aspects of the city that feel both precious and valuable, you want to retain and improve this quality – this feeling that when people feel at home in Hobart, they also feel at home within themselves. When we invite people to be a part of life here, we can make a more authentic, more honest offer to them. Why Hobart? This is why.

Over the past six weeks, we’ve shared the major themes we heard in interviews with over 180 Hobartians (or Tasmanians who live in Hobart!). In this weekend’s post, we’ll bring all of this together in the story for Hobart, and on Saturday and Sunday we’ll start bringing it to life at the Hobart City Forum.

What can you do here that wouldn’t work in another city?