G'day wanderers! I've missed you lovelies, but I needed to come back to share a story with you all. We all know about New York, "The City of Dreams" where "The Big Apple" resides. Youngsters move there from far and wide to pursue dreams, job opportunities, and live their best lives. Me? I went there starry-eyed and in pursuit of my dreams for a United Nations conference. But you didn't click this to learn about some boring conference, you clicked this to learn how my dreams were crushed, squashed, and pulverized right before they were obliterated. Dramatic much? Possibly, but bear with me.
Before New York...
I found out about this conference promptly 3 days before the actual date. This meant I had 3 days to find a flight, a place to stay, and mentally prepare to represent an organization I knew little about. My checklist soon read: Flight: ✓ , Airbnb: ✓ , Mentally Prepared: TBD.
All that was left to do was pack, but I decided I needed a break. Fast forward a couple hours to being passed out on my couch from exhaustion. I woke up frantic as I only had two hours to pack and get ready for my red-eye flight to New York. Imagine my shock when I found out that on this day (at approximately 2am) the time changed! It was daylights savings time ladies and gentlemen, and my frantic state turned into a full on panic. I had one hour to pack clothes, get ready and get to the airport on time. BISHHHH DID YOU MAKE IT??
Barely y'all, I barely made it, but by the grace of God himself, I found myself on this flight. After arriving in NY at 7am, I see a message from my Airbnb host (in Brooklyn) saying that I need to pick up the key to the apartment at 3pm in Manhattan. So I have to lug my bags around Manhattan for 8 hours. It's fine, no big deal. I made it to NY without missing my flight, and this is a great opportunity to network, I'm just going to make the best of it. So I did!
In New York...
3pm rolls around, no sign of host, 3:15...3:30....3:45...... This man doesn't show up until 4pm. I'm pissed and starving at this point, but figure I will find some real food once I get settled in. I arrive at the Airbnb, and see a couple that looks familiar. We realize that we are headed to the same Airbnb, but staying in different rooms. I walk into my room to see nothing but filth and used bed sheets y'all. FILTH AND USED BED SHEETS. I go see what the couple's room looks like, but before I can reach them I hear the girlfriend raging (at this point I know I'm not alone).
We decide to cancel our booking, call Airbnb to make a formal complaint, and book another Airbnb together to save on costs. We finally arrive at our new Airbnb around 7pm and I am famished. Instead of heading out into the cold with my sorry excuse of a jacket, I decided to order something from GrubHub and rest for the night to start my conference the next day on a positive note. HAHA, I'm so naive. Positivity? What's that?
I order from GrubHub at 8pm with an anticipated hour wait. 9pm rolls around, no sign of food, 9:30...10pm....10:30. After many calls and many empty promises of food, I fell asleep. Do y'all believe that around 11pm the delivery driver calls me to tell me he's outside. It took every ounce of my being not to curse him smooth TF out. I told him to go on with his food, I was in bed for the night (in retrospect, I see that my anger and petty left me hungry still...I'm working on myself, ok?).
Day 1/3 of the Conference
So I woke up the next morning going on almost 24 hours without food, starving AF and cold. So, flashback to me taking all of my winter clothes back to my parents house and picking up my spring clothes because North Carolina (where I live) had some promising weather. I left a light jacket here and there, but nothing heavy duty. Fast forward to me in NY with a light jacket in 20 degree weather. I was freezing. When I woke up in the morning, I decided the first order of business was to invest in a jacket (that I would promptly return upon leaving NY because financial responsibility DUUHHH). Although I had a friend to pick up from the bus station (as she was joining me for the conference), I assumed I would get a jacket to refrain from frostbite, get some food and head to the conference to begin my sessions before picking her up.
I got a jacket! I got some food! All was going well for the day until I realized I had some papers to print out to gain access to the UN Headquarters. Do y'all know how expensive it is to print something out in NY man? I went to a FedEx and to use the computer was $2/minute plus a printing fee. I was shook. Who pays these prices? THOSE SCAMMERS! By the time I went on this adventure, I had exactly enough time to get on the metro and reach not the conference, but my friend at the bus stop. The day was over. I spent my day riding metros, getting lost, printing expensive papers, and trying to stay positive (HAHA! POSITIVITY? WHAT'S THAT?)
Day 2/3 of the Conference
I woke up the next day, friend in hand, ready to take on the new day...this time with a partner in crime! I had forgotten my woes from the past two days, had a couple great laughs, and woke up with a smile on my face. I pull back the curtain to find A F***ING BLIZZARD. The conference was cancelled for the day. It's ok, we'll wake up the next day and try it all over again. HAHA, there I go with that positivity shit.
Day 3/3 of the Conference
On this day, we needed to check out of our Airbnb, meaning that we had to take all of our luggage with us. Here's the thing, the United Nations does not allow luggage into the premise for security reasons, so now we need to find a place to keep our luggage. Furthermore, my friend accidentally took a pair of car keys that she needed to overnight back to Virginia. So, we began our adventure lugging our suitcases through New York to a luggage dropoff zone in Manhattan, dropped off the keys, hit a couple of road blocks (i.e. missed bus, wrong metro time, soaked socks from the snow on the ground, etc.), but we finally made it to the United Nations.
We arrive at the main building, show our papers (that cost an arm and a leg to print), and get directed to another building a couple blocks away. We reach that building, show our papers, and get directed to another building in the same direction we just came from. So we're playing hide and go seek with the damn conference at this point. After about an hour, we get find the correct building, get our badges made and FINALLY enter the United Nations Headquarters.
After taking some pictures, looking around, and taking in the pure beauty that is that building, we picked up a program to see what workshops we could partake in. Since it was already 1pm, we knew we only had a couple hours to spare before needing to retrieve our luggage before we needed to be on the road for our bus and flight respectively. A good look at the program showed that right there, between 1pm and 3pm was a scheduled LUNCH period.
I could honestly do nothing but laugh. It was purely comical. I came all this way, wasted all this time, and all this money to go to the United Nations for a conference that I never even attended. BAHAHAHA, life is hilarious!
I wish I could say that was the end of my New York adventure, but lo and behold life always has plans of its own for you. If you're interested in what happens next, let me know in the comments below and I'll make a follow-up post!
WHAT CITY ARE YOU NEVER GOING BACK TO? Also let me know in the comments below!!!
And as always....