Something ridiculous happened to me yesterday, and the ridiculous thing is that I packed a Jetta up with all the stuff I hold near and dear, drove out of Northern Virginia and moved my whole human self to New York City. There are several dorky things I will confess to: Yes, we listened to Taylor Swift's "Welcome To New York" on the car drive up, and I'm not ashamed. Yes, my mom's parting words to me were "Don't take drugs!" (if you don't get the Almost Famous reference, EDUCATE YOURSELF IMMEDIATELY). And YES, literally every part of me is still screaming, internal organs and all. If you've ever dreamed of moving to New York, and actually made it happen, you know the feeling I'm talking about: The massive exhale. You made it. You're here. I made it. I'm here.
Unless you were a cool bird who was born and raised in New York, if you live here, you also had that Time When You Were An NYC Newbie. In fact, even though I have spent less than twenty-four hours here, I'm sure I stopped being the newest kid within thirty seconds of shutting the apartment door behind me, because people are zipping in and out of this city at the speed of light. Still, even though I have been here as a tourist/theater kid more times than I could possibly ever count, when you're in New York for good, it's like the whole city is cast in a different light (and also you become maybe the dorkiest version of yourself you've ever known). The moment you finally step foot into your new human life, these are the thoughts that will be all up in your brain's business until further notice:
1. Soooo ... Should I go outside now?
2. Yes. Outside. I should go outside.
3. But which part of outside? THERE IS SO MUCH OUTSIDE. LOOK AT THIS GOOGLE MAP, IT IS BASICALLY INFINITE IN ALL DIRECTIONS.
4. OH WOW, that person has some serious fashion.
5. That other person is also seriously super fashioned up.
6. Note to self: Reevaluate everything I wear forever and ever until I'm dead.
7. Oh god, they all know I'm new here. They can tell. I am the fraudiest fraud.
8. I AM MORE OF A FRAUD NOW THAN I WAS AS A TOURIST.
9. WHERE IS THE SUBWAY?!??!?!?!
10. If I just casually open Google maps in the middle of this crowded street nobody will suspect that I am, in fact, totally incompetent at navigation.
11. Oh, that group of people seems to know where they're going!
12. NOPE WRONG WAY.
13. On a scale of one to please-for-the-love-of-god-don't-do-this, how bad would it be to take a selfie right now?
14. I CROSSED A STREET WITHOUT THE WALK SIGNAL! I'M A NEW YORKER! I'M DOING IT!!!!!111!!1!
15. Where did all these adorable dogs come from?
16. Probably the same place where all this random dog crap came from.
17. Was that a famous person?!?!
18. Nope, just another human with a really great scarf. (Dammit.)
19. Ooooh, yummmm, what's that smell?
20. UCKKK, what's that smell?
21. Someone must have made an app for the subway. Right? RIGHT?!
22. Many people did. None of them makes sense.
23. Oh, look, that's only the 117th Starbucks I've seen today.
24. SO. MUCH. HONKING. New York = Rock out with your honk out.
25. It's official: Even toddlers know how to get around this city better than I do.
26. There is only one way to figure out that there is a "wrong" direction to walk around the lake in Central Park, and that's the awkward way.
27. Wait, how large exactly is this "park" again?
28. Parks are apparently the size of some sovereign nations in New York.
29. HOW IS EVERYONE WALKING FASTER THAN I AM WHEN I AM WALKING SO FAST?!
30. I'm pretty sure there is not a single food in the world this place doesn't sell somewhere.
31. WAS THAT A FAMOUS PERSON?
32. Still no.
33. Okay, so basically everything is under construction on every block forever. Got it.
34. ...Is that the side where Brooklyn is?
35. Also, which side is New Jersey?!
36. What direction am I walking in, anyway?!
37. Apparently, it can get so cold here that people put blankets on their trees. This bodes well for winters to come.
38. There's the Empire State Building! I know ONE THING!
39. I probably deserve a coffee for walking a lot, and also all the cool people are walking really fast holding coffees and looking very important.
40. JK JK JK coffee is priced at the equivalent of liquid gold.
41. Is it just me or are there WAYYY more hot people here than I anticipated? Hubba hubba.
42. Oh, sad tourist who stopped and asked me for directions. I am so sorry for us both.
43. HEY, for a second though someone thought I belonged here!
44. I will probably be long dead before I manage to sample every cupcake in this city.
45. And dead maybe seventy times over before I try all the pizza.
46. Did I see this block in a television show once?
47. Probably. I basically am Liz Lemon right now.
48. Or like a much less-savvy, dork squad, newbie version of the girls on Girls.
49. I can't wait to tell all my friends about this when I get home!
50. HOLY CRAP. THIS IS MY HOME NOW. I LIVE HERE.
52. Best. Life choice. Ever.
Images: Getty Images; Giphy (10)