On this exact day, two months ago, I did……… nothing. Because it didn’t exist. But the two days before, I spent with an amazing – but far from complete – sightseeing stroll through the city, full of innocent excitement and positivity for the time to come. Now, two months into this adventure, I realized that even living in New York City has its ups and downs. But the fact that I am writing this article while relaxing on the grass of sunny Central Park (pen on paper, later typed) shows that overall it is a great oppurtunity for me.
Without further ado, let me report to you, what I learned in these 62 days:
The US (architectural) working culture differs a lot from the European
This might have been the biggest one of the “downs” on the list. Though experiencing this also was the reason why I started this journey in the first place. Working hours here are just insane. During the week I don’t have any free minute. I basically work from getting up to going to bed. And then, on the weekends, I am out of energy, so that apart from cleaning chores and grocery shopping I hardly achieve anything. But it’s getting better a bit now and I’m starting to adapt to this lifestyle. I will talk about this issue in greater detail in another article soon.
It is really hard to meet new people (but not impossible)
In Helsinki I was lucky to have a lot of fellow interns and colleagues with similar ages and interests like me. That’s not the case here. Which resulted in some lonely evenings. I guess many people have been in a comparable situation in a new city. But I learned that you have to get out of your comfort zone from time to time and talk to people. Starting to share NYC moments with new friends is making this experience even better!
I need to do more weekend-trips
Three weeks ago I spontaneously took a bus and travelled to Washington DC (and still didn’t manage to finish the blog article about this – sorry!). It truly is an interesting (beautiful ?!) city and it was an amazing trip! An article about it will follow – hopefully soon.
Visitors are very welcome
Like in Helsinki, my family used my internship here as an excuse to do a New York vacation. Also two friends of mine happened to have passed by here already. Sharing time with them brightened up the little free time I’ve had besides work. Also this way I was able to cross out many points from the sightseeing to-do list together with them.
Sometimes what it needs is a “Tapetenwechsel” (change of scenery)
I had booked my room here from Germany already. It is nicely located, but over my budget. Though that wasn’t the only thing bothering me about it. Over time I just felt like that isn’t the place where I want to stay for 6 months. I hesitated, but then went back to online searching and found myself a new room, to which I will move tomorrow already as a start of a new chapter. Unfortunately I can only stay there for two months, but I’m optimistic that I will find another place after that time. It’s a chance to get to know about another part of the city.
All in all I am enjoying my time here. As you can see, there are more ups than down-moments. And I will continue working on turning all the new downs into ups as well. And an open-eyed walk through a new area of this urban bag of surprises makes up for everything else!
One of the biggest ups was receiving a confirmation for the next stop of this journey. Stay tuned to read soon where that will be…