New York, New York
Hey, the New York subway is easy to get used to, right?
These may read like famous last words, but using the transit system is all part of getting to know the city. That's what the most important part of an international internship is: getting to know the city that you're in. In my case, I had to learn how to live like a local in New York. That meant learning the transit system, knowing where to get groceries, understanding the neighbourhood I was in, and trying to understand how to get to and from my internship. I plan on addressing my internship itself in another post, and for now want to just focus on living in the city.
Are your from a major city? Have you ever ridden on a subway? If not, let me paint a little picture for you. Riding the subway is like being packed in a proverbial sardine can, with so many other sardines that stepping forward an eighth of an inch is impossible. Getting a seat? Not happening. Reaching the handle to hold onto for balance? Probably not happening, though there's so many other people in this moving tin can that losing your balance is close to impossible. Not that it's problem: the subway proved to be pretty effective, (Yes, yes, some people have problems riding the subway, but I did not. I can only write about my experience) in that it get you from point A to point B pretty quickly and effectively. I would get from my dorm on 3rd ave and 14th street to my office in Brooklyn within 20 minutes.
Ah, my office. One thing that I feel that I should say of the bat is that I could not have been luckier with my employer. This is something that I would advise anyone who is considering going on an internship: make sure you can find the right situation for you. For me, I was fortunate enough to work at an amazing firm called Canopach, a consulting agency that specializes in cyber security. My supervisor made sure that me and my co-intern had a good experience while we were in New York, and I leaned a lot from the city about him. That photo of me in front of the New York Stock Exchange? He took that, on a day in which we decided to have lunch in the financial district. As for our office, I may address that in a separate blog post, since it was really something. Let me just prefix that post by saying this: We Work offices are really, really awesome.
So to finish this post the way it started: is the New York subway easy to get used to? It takes a while, but it's certainly worth it. I feel like that's a microcosm for New York itself. It may be an adjustment from your current situation, but it's worth it in the end.