The August Edition - 10 Things I've learnt (learned) from living in NYC

Although we moved out here in May, August is the 1st official month of my living here (my visa says it, so it’s official, I don’t know if you knew but Facebook isn’t the official decider here) and I have learnt a lot in August.

  1. The difference between UK and US spelling is not as useful as I hoped it would be. Yes I might be right whatever way I look at it, but I am utterly confused 80% of the time.
  2. If you see an empty subway carriage DO NOT GET IN IT. It usually means the A/C isn’t working and therefore you’ll be in a lot of sweaty discomfort. It’s the kind of mistake you make once and then never, ever again.
  3. Living out of boxes isn’t as romantic as in the movies. We slept on a sofa bed mattress on the floor for a few weeks and at first it felt like we were in a movie. We ate Chinese take out cross legged on the floor (not out of the cool boxes though), lived out of suitcases and drank wine out of jam jars. It gets old pretty quickly.
  4. The spouse of a J2 visa has a great deal when it comes to work. Ed (the J1) has to stay in the job he applied for the visa with (although he’s not complaining, he’s loving it), and I (the J2 dependant) can work in whatever job I get (once the work permit arrives... fingers crossed).
  5. It’s super hard to motivate myself when I don’t have a job. My work permit will take 3 months to come through so in the mean time I’m finding ways to occupy myself… It’s easy to occupy myself (I am in New York after all) but, it’s surprisingly easy to achieve nothing with my day.
  6. My husband looks pretty sharp in scrubs. Ed got the chance to don some light blue scrubs and watch brain surgery…he actually saw a real life human brain while it was still in someone’s head! Weird.
  7. New York rocks at the free stuff. There are so many awesome free activities going on in New York that it’s actually quite easy to spend nothing on entertainment. On Saturday we strolled through a rammed Indonesian street market, we popped onto 8th Avenue which was closed off with stalls and then wandered through Central Park to watch softball and volleyball.
  8. Tipping is a complicated business. It’s pretty easy in restaurants etc. because it’s obvious on the bill or it’s generally about $1 per drink in bars, BUT it all falls to pieces with deliveries. I wish New York would create a ‘Tipping Manual’ to explain everything, especially tipping doormen at Christmas… I hope we pick up the rules by then.
  9. In a studio apartment I'm way tidier than Ed and I ever thought possible. I'm not a dirty human being but I have been known to make full use of the 'floordrobe' so when I knew that we'd be living in a studio, I wasn't too confident in my ability to keep it tidy (no matter how many times I said 'it'll be fine'). I am pleasantly surprised at how neat and tidy I have been, and yes, it may be because I don't currently have a job or that we moved over with a suitcase and a holdall each so we don't have loads of stuff BUT I'm putting it down to me being a reformed human being.
  10. You can’t convince me to run even on the coolest routes. We live near Central Park and the Hudson Greenway, yet I still find it impossible to convince myself that running is a good idea! Pick it up Elishia… do it like the New Yorkers do, all the time and very stylishly.