manhattan exhaustion

22Jul12

i was struck by how fast people walked in manhattan. women in suits and heels, walking so fast you could have sworn they were running. mothers with baby strollers, hurrying to mcdonalds without bothering to say “pardon” or “excuse me”.

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the one time i felt like a tourist in my city, the one time i felt like i didn’t belong, was every time i held open a door for an elderly person, or a mother with children. i never saw another person in the city do that, and it saddened me. where i am from in the south, you take off your shoes when entering a person’s home, say “yes ma’am”, and hold the doors open for women with children and the elderly (men are to hold it open for all women, regardless of whether they have kids with them). since moving to illinois, i cannot tell you how many doors i have had slammed on my face, because i expect the man at the post office to hold it open for me.

culture shock.
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the pace in my city was incredible, but i soon learned to keep up. i was consantly wired on the energy of those around me – who needed double shots of espresso when you were surrounded by such energy, so many dreams, so many people trying so hard to do what seemed important to them at the time.

i got by on six hours of sleep a night, sometimes less. and i didn’t notice it affecting me, until i boarded my plane home. i fell asleep almost as soon as i sat down.

i was only there for ten days. i cannot imagine how people feel when they leave after not leaving the city for five years.

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