I recently traveled solo for my birthday week this year as I turned 24. I decided to do this because I was at the point in my life when I did not know where I want to go and what I want to do with my life. I was lost. I decided I needed to go somewhere on my own to clear my mind and find myself. This was the first time I did not plan anything and decided to go with the flow and just allow life to take wherever I needed to be.
I chose New York City because it was what my Visa Travel Points could afford at the moment and I know someone I could stay for free. I decided not to spend money on things but rather experience New York as New Yorkers would experience it.
The sad thing is that no one would take photos of me. I mean, I could ask people to take my photo but sometimes, I get too shy.
I could go anywhere I want anytime I want. In short, I do not have to worry about anyone else but me. My day is mine and I could plan it the way I want to. It is so freeing to have that experience.
I used Tinder to meet people to show me around and tour me around which is pretty handy. Just make sure to let them know right away that you are on Tinder to have someone show you around New York City and not to hook up with them (unless they’re cute enough and you want to).
I met someone who took me to places where most tourists did not know about so that was pretty cool. I get to try things and go to places that a true New Yorker would know. He brought me to his favourite places in Staten Island and also taught me how to eat pizza the New Yorker way! I saw it through his eyes and I fell in love. It is pretty safe to say that I left a part of me in Staten Island. The bad thing is that, it breaks my heart to leave knowing that nothing is going to come out of it.
Life is silly. You go to New York to find yourself and then you find someone else instead. Have the greatest time and summer of your life and then take it away from you in an instant.
Moving on, New York drivers are crazy! I seriously thought I was going to die while biking in Manhattan!
New Yorkers are pretty helpful and nice. NYC is a safe place. When my plane landed in JFK, I haven’t seen New York City yet but I already fell in love with it. I love New York, day or night. Brooklyn Bridge Park is one of my favorite places and Times Square, too! I ended up shopping on my last night because that’s what happens when I’m sad. Want free wifi in Times Square? Hang around Sephora or H & M (they even have seats and plugs for your phone).
The only thing is that NYC is a bit dirty, piles of trash bags on the sidewalk and rats on the subway.
Also, people jaywalk all the time! Sign says stop, look both ways, no cars, proceed.
Subways can be confusing depending on the time of day.
New Yorkers get lost and need maps, too. 🙂 So, don’t worry about looking like a tourist while holding a map.
This was the only place I went to for vacation where I did not feel like I was in vacation. I felt at home. I felt that I belong. It made me dream again. I did find myself. I found what I want. Now I know what I want to do with my life. I would find a journalism career in New York City or I would apply as a law student in NYC and pursue a law career there.
NYC also made me realize that love is possible. I mean, with that much people in one place, there’s got to be one there for you. And I love the people there because I feel like everyone in NYC knows how to dream and acts on it. I am an ambitious person and I work hard for things that I want to achieve and I want someone like that.
Thank you, New York City, for everything. It breaks my heart to leave you but I will be back, I promise.