Throughout the next 10 weeks, I’m going to physically write out a part of this chapter on this blog. I’m going to write about what it’s like to intern at Time Inc., live in Manhattan and figure out what I want to do around this time in one year….
I’m not Carrie Bradshaw with a glamorous column to figure things out, but I am Nina Ruhe with a blog. As I write this chapter, help me figure things out. Ask questions when you have them, give advice. Help me live and write this chapter.
UPDATE: It’s been just over one week since I moved to the packed island of Manhattan. Overwhelming is an understatement of this city, especially if you’ve never been here before. It’s not just me that thinks it, too, a few of my Uber drivers confirmed the same feeling.
Of course it’s overwhelming. Over one and a half million people manage to live in just about 23 square miles. That’s a shorter distance than a marathon. Runners could compete by running the city.
The size of the city aside, though, I’m doing as promised and letting you know what it’s like to live in Manhattan.
Since I’ve moved to the city, I can’t tell you how many times people have asked, “So…Do you L-O-V-E it?”
Whether they’re asking me face to face or behind a phone, I can picture their face perfectly when asking this question: wide eyes, an open smile, as if waiting for me to interrupt them and rave about the packed piece of land.
And my answer? At least for now: no.
I didn’t fall in love with the city the second my plane flew over the skyline. I didn’t adore the packed buildings and lack of greenery and smoke-free air. I wasn’t in awe over the fact that I’d be sleeping in a tiny twin top bunk for a couple of months. But there were still aspects I liked about the city, just not enough to make me love it at this very moment.
New York is a lot to take in. Let me break down this first week into the goods and bads so you understand my thought process.
- My mom was here for the first three days to help me out (mentally and financially)
- I saw two Broadway musicals and went backstage for one of them. I met the lead in the musical and took some insta-worthy photos I’ll never delete.
- Two of my older cousins from Ohio were also in New York, so I got to hang and get drinks with them. Who knew to see family all you had to do was move to a completely new state?
- A clear sight of Lady Liberty is an elevator ride up four flights of stairs and out a rooftop door from where I call home for the next 10 weeks.
- My office is DOPE and only a 10 minute walk away from my apartment… meaning I don’t have to worry about public transportation or spending money on Ubers.
- One of my best friends is here.
- I started making connections at places that I hope to apply to when I graduate.
- The first musical I saw (with my mother) was Cats. There was no story line or plot.
- Drinks, food, transportation– EVERYTHING is extremely expensive here
- Instead of falling asleep to a still quiet, I try to block out the sounds of honking cars and ferry boats and a somewhat broken air conditioning fan.
- Everywhere you go is crowded. I’m talking absolutely packed
- I still feel extremely overwhelmed.
On numbers, the Goods outweigh the Bads. On feelings and comfort levels, they’re pretty even right now. In fact, the Bads are pulling a little ahead of the Goods.
It could be because I haven’t started work yet, so I don’t have a schedule or routine.
It could be because the subway system still baffles me.
It could be because this is not my usual lifestyle.
Much like Manhattan, there’s a lot going on inside of my head right now, so if you were to ask me if I LOVE it, I can’t give you an accurate answer right now.
There are too many things to be focused on other than whether or not I have strong feelings for a place full of smoke, skyscrapers and food stands.
I’m not Carrie Bradshaw. I’m a young woman from Ohio, Missouri and North Carolina. You don’t need to be a geographer to understand those places are a little different from the Big Apple, but I’m hopeful.
While the past week was a little intimidating and felt far away from home, this week I begin work. With that, hopefully a routine that leads me to meet a lot of great new people along the way.
In the meantime, stick with me and help me figure out this concrete jungle and journey.