As I’m starting my second month in this diverse jungle of a city, I’m also getting used to the pace of it.
The New York experience is not entirely new to me, since I’ve already been here several times due to family ties, and also a 3 months long internship in 2014. I fell in love with the culture, madness and density the city has to offer every single time, and it got to me again. However, I’m not saying it’s easy to digest everything instantly, even for someone who think they know what to expect…
My girlfriend arrived a month before me, and when I landed we managed to move together to our new home. She moved from my family’s house in Sleepy Hollow (where she stayed while waiting for me to come), and I moved from Budapest. We live in Crown Heights now, a friendly neighbourhood of Brooklyn, next to the beautiful Prospect Park. My commute to Greenwich Village is also a bearable 40 minutes (on paper at least), but here comes the tricky part: the subway system.
It works exactly like the stairways of Hogwarts. There are tons of lines going in every direction, some of which lead to different places on different days. As an architect, I’m comfortable to say I navigate in foreign cities with ease, but here it’s entirely different. On several occasions I found myself in parts of the city I had never been to before, simply because the metro changed its mind and turned in another direction, used a different track or just decided to surprise us. Still, it has it’s advantages too. First, you worry less, because you just accept the fact that you are helpless in these situations. Second, you get used to following the instinct of local people, thus learning how to navigate on your own. And third, the New York Subway is both a circus and a transport system. You just can’t get bored once you get on the metro with all the actions of random strangers, musicians, and artists. Below ground level, every day is Halloween.
See you in a month, and New Yorkers, just go with the flow!