Well, hello there,

I know it’s been awhile since we’ve talked & I’m sure you’ve noticed that a lot has changed around here, i.e new blog name & layout. For those of you new to my site, welcome. And for those who’ve been here for a while, welcome back.

Along with my blog, a lot has changed in my personal life as well; I recently celebrated my 23rd birthday and most excitingly, I moved to New York City!

Yes, I am proud to report to you from the Big Apple, the City that Never Sleeps, the Concrete Jungle or whatever else you want to call it.

I just started my new job at a media/marketing firm last Monday, and even in this short amount of time, I’ve managed to learned so much. Because of this, I decided to kick off my new journey and “new” blog, by sharing the 10 things I’ve learned (already) as a New-New Yorker. Let’s get into it:

First off,

1.) New Yorkers aren’t that bad. Besides the occasional blatant disregard when people are frantically trying to pack themselves into an obviously overcrowded train and the frequent occasions where people are walking pass me as if I don’t exist, I’ve had the pleasure of not running into any trolls. In fact, I’ve had pretty positive experiences engaging with random people on the street; whether I’m asking for directions or complimenting their outfit. What surprises me the most is how receptive people have been once they learn that I’m new to the city. Many have a word or two of advice to share, dish helpful insight, or just wish me good luck. I’m trying my best to remember all of their warm wishes, since I know I’ll need the encouragement for a rainy day.

Because…

2.) You will miss home… like, a lot. When I was back in Charleston, SC., underemployed & overworked, all I could think about was how bad I wanted to get to New York and how I wouldn’t let anything stop me until I got here. I really was not a fan of the whole G.R.I.T.S  (girls raised in the south) lifestyle and quite frankly, after 8 years living there, I was over it. But, now that I’m in the “Big City” and almost 800 miles away from my family and friends, I can already see how I look for opportunities in a conversation to bring up home. It can get lonely at times and having to start all over with friends and developing a social life can seem like a daunting task. However, I am grateful that I could start this journey by staying with my cousin who has been the greatest host of all. Just remember to keep in contact with your loved ones, because I’m sure they miss you just as much as you miss them.

But the good news is…

3.) MTA workers will become your  best friend. If you don’t know where you are going, don’t run around these New York streets like a chicken with its head cut off, ask someone for help. Now, I know some of these MTA workers look like they don’t want to be bothered with your seemly simple-minded questions, but don’t take it personally, no one around here really wants to be bothered, but hey, you need to get home, so don’t be ashamed to ask.

Once you’re on the train…

4.) When you’re a beginner to the New York City Transit subway system, stand, do not sit down. I don’t necessarily say this out of courtesy, (although you should give your seat up to an elderly or disabled person) so I’m sure this may seem like a strange lesson, but just consider the following: Say you’re new to the area and have absolutely no sense of direction when it comes to the subway system. Your train arrives, you take a seat, then all of a sudden you get to the next stop and 10-15 people load the train. Not only do you lose a degree of personal space, but your line of sight just went out the door too. Personally, I need to see the stops as they come, but if everyone around you is standing, blocking your view, you’ve just become immobilized. So, if you’re not a pro at navigating the subway, do yourself a favor and stand up so you can see where you’re going.

Still, there are some things you just can’t avoid, for instance…

5.) Weekend subway schedules are the purest form of evil. For some reason, I’ve been finding myself in Brooklyn on the weekends and already, this is appearing to be a very, very bad decision. The commute from the Bronx to Brooklyn is a trek within itself, but adding weekend detours and construction, it’s enough to make you feel like Stoop Kid afraid to leave your stoop. There really isn’t any way around this, so leave the house early and refer back to point 3.

Or you could always…

6.) Watch what other people do. Now, I say this with reservation. I’m not saying to follow someone into a stream of ongoing traffic (because these New Yorkers will not stop for ANYONE). What I am saying though is that you can learn a lot from watching other people in the city who have lived here longer than you. If you’re shy about asking questions or just don’t wanted people to know you’re the new girl, become a professional observer and watch others.

Also…

7.) Walk faster. No really, that cute little stroll that you’ve master while you were trying to be seen on the yard during you college days gotsta go. People here will bulldozer you over if you are even an inch in the direction they’re headed. It’s strange how literally, everyone here seems to be in a rush, all the time, but I guess that’s just the hustle of the city. At any rate, maintain a consistent, brisk strut, follow the direction of the crowd, and act like you know where you’re going… even if you don’t.

Money…

8.) Always have cash on you. I stay in the Bronx right now, and there are a lot of corner stores in the area that do not accept debit/credit cards. Now, it’s safe to assume that if you’re at a corner store, you’re just looking for something quick to grab & go, so chances are you won’t mind using the ATM they have on site to make a withdrawal, only problem with that is the $1.50 fee that comes with it. This may seem harmless the first or second time, but eventually those fees add up, so go ahead and visit your own banking services and keep some cash on you.

Guys…

9.) New York guys are fly but mad weird. I lol’ed at this one because I used to put New York guys on a pedestal. I used to think they were all smooth and put together, (maybe because I’m looking for a Nas out here) but the opposite is proving to be true. Just the other day, I was at the bus stop waiting for the 36 and this really cute guy walks by me with his laundry bag in hand (okay, he’s hard working, that’s good). It was obvious we both noticed each other but instead of speaking or at least giving me the “what’s up” nod, homeboy just looked dead in my face for what felt like forever. Umm, hello?! It was so strange and all I wanted was my face back. I don’t know if they think they’re too cool or expect girls to do the work, but either way, I’m not buying it. But then again, it’s still early.

And finally…

10.) It’s okay not to know where you’re going as long as you get there. You could actually apply this to pretty much all aspects of life, to be honest. When I graduated from school 10 months ago, my goal was to get to New York City. I had no idea how I was going to get here, where I would live or if I could even afford to eat, but God had His way of mapping out my path to get here. Now, I have a job, a place to live, and an endless desire to make my mark in the city. I’m already learning it’s okay to get lost, meet new people, be fearless and to have fun. I’ve made it a week in the city and so far so good…

Sincerely,

Aley Arion – Your Millennial Mami

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Posted by:aleyarion

when i first set out to create my blog, i just wanted an outlet to balance my mundane college schedule. but over the years, it has become so much more. writing is how i process my world & the events that take place within it. through aleyarion.com, i seek to help my fellow 20-somethings, like me, working to find light when their paths seem darkened and learn from my mistakes so i can save you the trouble of repeating them. aleyarion.com is witty, vulnerable, and transparent, but most importantly, it's me, unapologetically. peace, peace, peace Aley Arion business inquiries: aleyarion@gmail.com

4 replies on “New-New Yorker Diaries: 10 Things New York Taught Me in 10 Days

  1. Im so glad i read this, because i’m planning my big move after being all done with school. But I love the city and have experienced everything you listed while visiting. Love the post!

    1. It’s so great to hear that you enjoyed the post!! Yeah, it’s crazy how relatable our experiences can be just from navigating the city, but I love it too!! Def feel free to reach out once you arrive in the city, we could connect!

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