My second week in New York is coming to a close. I would love to say that I have settled in to a steady routine, in some ways I have, but New York just doesn't seem to work like that. Another long
I have started getting used to my morning commute to work. Thankfully the PATH is a bit cleaner than the Metro but it is still very busy in the mornings and I usually end up standing the whole 30minute journey to 33rd Street/6th Avenue. So far work is very busy, but I quite like it that way as I feel like I'm learning a lot, and my team has been really helpful in getting me up to speed. On Monday there was a total eclipse in the US, but only 70% of the eclipse was visible in New York so we didn't go totally dark. It was really fun to see everyone go out of there offices to watch it - Park Avenue was packed, and other people on my programme said their offices were watching too.
After work I have been trying to do lots of things in the evenings to get involved with the other people on my programme. On Monday a group of us went to Bryant Park to watch Dirty Dancing which was on as part of the HBO Summer Film Festival. It was the first time I have seen it all the way through, and it was made so much more special by the incredible atmosphere. People were cheering and booing the various characters, quoting along ("Nobody puts Baby in the corner") and we all got up at the end to dance along to the finale. The summer is drawing to a close so it was nice to do something outside while the evenings are still warm.
On Tuesday I was in desperate need of home cooked food, so I went to ShopRite, a reasonably priced supermarket close to where I live. I only went in for a few things but it was enormous and, unlike British supermarkets which have a vague order, everything was scattered around, so I was there for an hour and a half! It was also difficult because brands are different, and ingredients are not always listed, trying to buy healthy food is quite difficult. I suppose that with time I will learn, so it will be a bit trial and error in the next few months.
On Wednesday we discovered a lovely restaraunt called Taphaus where they do amazing burgers and fries. I had the Texas BBQ burger which I was curious about beacuse it had something called a "cheese patty" in it. When it arrived the cheese patty was similar to a battered mozarella stick but with cheddar. It tasted incredible but I think it may have reduced my life expectancy by at least a month! YOLO.
If you're visiting New York any time soon I would recommend downloading the app Pulsd because it offers lots of discounts on events (especially brunch) around the city. A large group of us had signed up for Empire Cruises Single's Night cruise - which we didn't realise was a single's night until after we booked it! On Thursday we went over to Kips Bay to board our boat which had its own bar, dining area and a huge dancefloor. The best part though was the top deck, which showed us incredible views of the city - including the Statue of Liberty (check out my Instagram post here). It was a really good evening and a shame for those of us that had work the next day that we couldn't stay out for longer once we finished the cruise at 10:30pm.
Friday was another busy day at work, and I had to use my lunch break to set up my bank account and pick up my social security card. In order for me to be paid/employed I need a US bank account, which I had filled in the forms for at orientation. I had to activate my card and sign up for online banking, which in the UK takes 10minutes to do. For the US account it took my entire one hour lunch break, and I had to run back to the office because it made me late for a meeting. Not great but I can now officially be called a US resident because I have social security and a "checking" (not current) account.
After a busy week with a couple of late nights I was looking forward to some chill time at the weekend. I went for a run around Hoboken/along the waterfront on Saturday morning, and spent some time at the sales in Newport Mall. I bought a beautiful long green shirt from Macy's which had been reduced by 83% - far better than any sales I've been to in the UK! Newport has an artificial beach so I went there with my flatmate and relaxed, before going to watch the Floyd Mayweather vs Conor Mcgregor
fight at Tender. Sadly I got to the bar late and it was full capacity, so instead a group of us went to a bar overlooking Times Square and watched the fight on our phones. I don't know much about boxing but it was fun to watch.
Sunday I went to Brooklyn to watch the Battle of Brooklyn parade in Greenwood Cemetary. It was quite a small parade, but it was fun to see people dressed up in old fashioned clothes. Having bought tickets for Hamilton I am trying to brush up my knowledge of the American Revolution before I go, and the battle was lead by George Washington himself. The cemetary is absolutely huge, and there was a tour you could do around the various crypts but I was really hungry so I went to Bagel Pub for my first NYC "lox" (smoked salmon) bagel. Afterwards I joined some of the other people from my programme at Coney Island beach. I swam in the sea, sunbathed and took advantage once again of the summer before it ends!