Since I was a child, I have always dreamt of living in New York City and I really wanted to get the chance to be part of it one day. That day has finally come. April 22nd. My first day at the host organization. I have to start serving in the city of my dreams, serving at an organization that means so much to me, since it really wants to make a change in our society. I don’t want to talk about what I’m currently working on or how beautiful the office is. I want to reflect on some aspects of New York City life that I found really far from my home culture and some funny facts. So, let’s start with them.

It may has been perceived as a ridiculous and common misconception, but it’s not: New Yorkers are always running a marathon. Always. Why is it important saying “always”? It’s crucial using that adverb because people from here do not only run when they’re late in the morning or want to catch the last train in the evening; they run on Sunday, as well. The reason why they do that is probably given by the tons of commitments that they have but it’s always funny seeing people walking around the city just like gazelles.

In New York, especially within the city, you don’t stop working until the sun goes down. Seriously, they do not take any lunch break. It was my first day and I didn’t really know how to act in front of my new colleagues regarding the breaks. Noon and nobody eats: I thought it was just because it was too early. A quarter to one and nobody eats: I was wondering if they may have had some big breakfast, since they seemed not hungry. One and a half and guess what? Nobody eats. One of my colleagues had the courtesy to kindly inform me that people eat whenever they want in here and that having a lunch break is not really common: everybody sits in front of his desk and eats there. Good to know.

Have you ever watched Stuart Little? If not, you probably didn’t have a great childhood. If yes, would you be able to tell me why the movie is set in the “Big Apple”? For those who might be thinking that it is because New York City is where dreams come true and that even a little rat, named Stuart, can become someone special here, I’m sorry to inform you that it’s not that the reason. The reason why it is set in NYC is that you can’t live a day in here without getting into a rat, sometimes even more than once. Since I am really passionate about the environment, seeing mountains of trash in the street makes me feel a little sick, but I hope things are going to be better one day..?

I love Frank Sinatra and as his true fan, I know the song called “New York, New York” very well (even if Liza Minelli was the first one to sing it). At some point he sings: “I want to wake up in the city that doesn’t sleep…”. He was a hundred percent right. This city never sleeps. Never. That’s why drivers around New York honk and shout at every possible hour, because they drive through the city that never sleeps. Guess what? I like sleeping.

Apart from these sarcastic aspects, I really feel that this city is so much different from the other cities that I travelled to. It lets you be whoever you want to be. Whether you want to be a night animal, a workaholic, a musician, a writer, a broker, here you can find the size that is just right for you. There is so much energy, so many good vibes, so much craziness, that you are going to love it or hate it. Currently I love it but who knows what I will think about NYC in a year and, as Sinatra says, “it’s up to you New York” but most of all “if I can make it there, I’ll make it anywhere”.