I agree on NYC. For whatever it offers me.
My NYC visit was not without an agenda.
It was for my office‘s worldwide marketing retreat where we gathered marketing people from different countries where the offices are located. From alignment on vision and mission to exchange best practices, the experience was rejuvenating.
You thought your issue is yours only? Nope. Other countries experience it too at different levels. Do you think dealing with board members is not tricky? Others think the opposite. And so on, and so on, and so on. I feel confident, I feel strong. Not to mention the 32 hours + 10 hours flight and 7.5 hours layover. I went home with a smile.
Those are not it. The reason why I smile was not just the retreat.
I remembered back then on 2014, my first marketing retreat. My first solo trip abroad. Not to my nearest neighbour (Singapore? Myanmar?), but to the US. I remembered the look my family gave to me when they heard I will be going to the US alone. I remembered backwards they were really upset when they heard I wanted to go out at 6PM in Dubai, one of the safest places on earth (some people say), back in December 2013, alone. I felt not being trusted but I completely understand what was on their mind. Then I made an oath that someday I will go abroad alone. Granted. 2 months later.
I remembered my first NY trip. The dead animal museums (felt like in heaven!), the children’s art museum, subways, wrong subways lane, screenshot maps, the High Line, and the 1/345 part of Central Park. I remember who I was back then. I wanted to explore alone, all by myself.
Solitude is a bliss. Alone, not lonely.
My mantra. Being alone is not a crime, nor a shameful thing. During this year’s trip, I decided to try another thing. I didn’t want to be the same as last time. This year’s trip I decided to agree. Agree on things that I never do. Things I never try.
Funny that one simple decision can lead you to many things. Imagine yourself walking in the same path every day, then you got bored, then you decided to turn left in that alley. I decided to explore NY with someone that I just met in the JFK airport.
And what did it take me to? Iconic places that I have always been curious and wanted to see, in one day! Time Square, Rockefeller, Grand Central Station, Liberty statue, Wallstreet, Chinatown, Little Italy, Central Park, and jazz cafe. (Not to forget my amazing Airbnb in Midtown). Extremely happy to tick on my bucket list.
When you ask whether I can imagine myself living in this place, my answer will be “Currently speaking? No.” I don’t have enough data, enough experience, enough of everything to say yes. But I agree with the idea to come again next time, I agree on NYC.
Bonus: love that I got my seat upgraded while using Cathay from Hongkong to Jakarta. From economy to premium economy, it made huge differences in terms of leg space & seat width size. My poor back felt happy, I am blessed.