dinsdag 3 oktober 2017

Day 4: NYC on a budget

📍 Location: 7th Avenue, New York, USA
(View from my classroom)

Today I had my first real school day. I met my teacher and my classmates, who are all very nice. Every weekday the classes are from 8:30 until 12:00, with a 15-minute break in between. After that you’re free to do whatever you want.

After I had lunch with two Brazilian people in a nice place called Cafe R, I decided to go on my own to Central Park and the Upper East Side. I was kind of tired and not really in the mood for company, so I was actually happy to be on my own for a while. I spend the whole afternoon just wandering around, taking pictures like a real tourist and eventually ending in a Starbucks to use their wifi and Skype with my friends. 

By the way, enjoying New York while on a budget is such a big struggle. It takes effort to find the very few places where you can get a meal for just a few bucks. And when you’re hungry or in a hurry, you don’t have time for that. So without really realizing it, you’re spending a lot of money on food. Especially Starbucks is a tricky one. In New York there’s one on literally every corner, with their iced caramel macchiatos, chicken caprese sandwiches and great Wi-Fi connection. Also a great place to Skype. So I’ve probably been the one of the biggest fundraiser for them for the past few days. But now I’ve realized that if I’m going to stay here for a month, I need to make some changes.

So around 9 PM I found myself cutting a cucumber with a plastic knife on toilet paper (fimprovised cutting board) in my room. Preparing breakfast for the next morning. #NYCampingLife. I felt like such a loser, haha. When my roommates entered the room, they laughed and told me that there are better ways to save money on food. For example, to not buy your groceries in a supermarket in Manhattan - as I did - because the prices are way more expensive than in Brooklyn. They said that I needed to go to these places called Deli’s, which are basically like little supermarkets, with which Brooklyn is filled. They also sell cheap freshly made sandwiches and Chinese food. A new world opened for me that evening. So from now on it will be only Deli’s for me.

But for tomorrow I've made myself breakfast. A bagel with some hummus, tomato, cucumber and lettuce. Wrapped in toilet paper because aluminum foil was too expensive. I’m already looking forward to the next morning.

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