WARNING: Potentially long and serious post.
I hope that some people here can help me out, as this is a decision I will have to make within the next two years.
I've gave NYC a try for a year, and I feel like I don't fit in. Since I'm an engineering student and like lists, here are my reasons why:
- Being happy is a GOOD thing. I feel that so many people here (especially the women, regardless of age) are so unhappy and gloomy. Wherever I go, whether it'd be the train, streets, or stores (unless it's something material, of course), fellow New Yorkers seem so upset. In fact, I actually told one woman that she "looks so serious" (she had a nice frown on her face, almost an aggressive one), and she actually responded that "that's what her face looks like." She actually re-iterated that after someone else talked to her. Sigh.
- Friendship is fake. When I was younger and inexperienced with the corporate environment, I enjoyed hustling and walking with the masses of people heading for their office jobs in the finance sectors of Manhattan. However, after spending a few months working inside of it (three months at a time), I quickly became disillusioned. Besides the usual office politics and complaints, every friendship that I saw; every social interaction I noticed; I got the impression that everything was just business. Nothing seemed genuine. I felt that people were concerned about others and their lives...until 5pm (or 6 or 7pm, in my case) came around. This feeling is amplified even more when juxtaposed with my current job, where a LOT of the relationships created here go way beyond work time (some people here even rely on that to stay). That's why I avoided making friends; I like making friends with people that will be worth it.
- I'm not trendy. I don't care for living in an overpriced 2-room apartment (that collects no value), just to be near some hot restaurants and nightlife, and maybe receive some amenities that I can take care of myself anyway.
- Like driving, cycling sucks around here. It's fun to pace with taxis and get the rush of almost getting hit, but it's not something I want to spend my 20's doing. I also would love to live next to smooth road and be closer to beautiful climbs and rural roads.
Because of all of this, I'm thinking of moving to a different landscape when I'm done with school. I'm slated to graduate in May 2010, unless things change and I can graduate early in December (doubtful). I was wondering if y'all could offer some suggestions to consider.
My former girlfriend resides in North Carolina now, and when I went to visit her four months ago, the location was GREAT, the housing was cheap (and you get some NICE houses), and the people were slower, but friendlier. I'm actually looking for an environment that's slooooooooooowwwwwwwweeeeeerrrrr. I don't really feel the need to rush in my life, since I have quite a while to live anyway. I already understand that I can expect my starting salary to be comparatively lower, but this recent co-op has taught me that there are better things in life than having money. I'm happier now than I've ever been, and I'm practically working paycheck to paycheck (which I never had to do in my previous job in Midtown). I do, however, want to be at least between 50 to 100 miles away from a city so that I can have an easy outlet to the essentials, like shopping or entertainment.
There is another alternative: give the city some more time. I've already lived here for a year, and I will live here until I graduate. I've already tried living on campus, and Hoboken is pretty much like New York, but smaller (and you know what they say about pressure and volume). Compounded with the "wonderful" college life and its populace, I will have no problems skipping on it. Considering that I've shared these feelings practically since I've moved here, is it that the adjustment period is a little longer for some, or should I go with my feelings and start planning?
What do you guys think?
Thanks, and I really appreciate any kind advice anyone can offer. Feel free to PM me if you have any side notes you want to discuss.