启程｜Let's start right here in New York!
Three years ago, I kissed my parents goodbye at Pudong International airport. With two overweight pieces of luggage, I left my home Shanghai. I never imagined that I would stay in the US so long.
刚到波士顿的时候，我和一起来美打拼的奇奇租了一个大学村Brighton里的单间公寓，就在波士顿出了名破烂的绿线站点旁边，晚上睡觉还能听见“当当当”的车铃声， 房间几乎没有隔音，半夜两三点都能清楚听见从sports bar回来的老美邻居在街边破口大骂。
I moved into a one-bedroom apartment in Brighton near Boston University with Qiqi, who was my college friend in Shanghai. It was a typical apartment in the student housing area. With its thin walls, the sound of the T train was my daily lullaby. And sometimes late night revellers made a lot of noise on the street leaving the neighborhood bars at closing time.
That was the moment I became homesick;
those little things reminded me that I was an outsider,
and this city was just too far away for me…
But the second day when I woke up, I was totally fine. My professors gave me so many assignments, I had no time to be sad. I read hundreds of pages from textbooks every week; the library became my second home. I have to admit that I became a total nerd at that time, and still am today. On weekends, I carried my laptop to the café preparing my Presentations and composed my essays with the help of an electronic translator. Sometimes I explored the city a little, going to the Korean Tofu House on Harvard Ave with my friends, or spending a day trying to read two or three pages of an English novel while lying near the Charles River .
People sometimes say that I’m goofy, that I never worry about what’s going on. Yes, I am, absolutely. When I went to the first class of middle school, I was the only kid who didn’t bring my enrollment form, so the teacher scolded me and kicked me out of the classroom. My friends teased me with an old Chinese saying ‘Wits have poor memories ‘ or ‘Fortune favors fools’， but my ‘merit’ really brought me a lot of trouble when I moved to the US.
After only two days in my new apartment, I was bitten by the fleas, and no one could help me. So I finally killed them myself. I forgot to mark citations in my essay, and the professor accused me of plagiarism, which almost got me kicked out of BU… There were millions of traumatic experiences in those three years. Thanks to my twenty years of smooth life, it made my tough moments in the US so unforgettable.
After I graduated from BU, I moved to New York for an unpaid internship in a Fashion PR company. Most of my friends went back to China, even Qiqi. I packed all my stuff in one day and drove by myself to New York in a small car that I rented from Enterprise. That day, I remember the moment when I first saw the city of Manhattan, I felt like I was coming home.
Not long after I moved to NYC,
the thought of establishing my platform came into my mind.
是纽约教会我，每个人都应该有自己的活法，不与他人比较好坏，因为根本无从比较。我想让更多人看到how amazing it is when you become your true self,这就是我创建平台的初衷。
Everyone has the right to choose their own lifestyle in New York. No comparisons, no judgments. I want to tell people how amazing it is when you become your true self, this is why I started writing.
With so many interesting people that I met in NYC,
I wanted to do something for them and also for myself.
Everyone is trying to make the most of his or her potential,
and this make up the charm of New York City.
My friend Brian is a financial advisor in New York Life, but he is also an event planner and DJ.
Andrew owns a catering company, and teaches yoga on weekends.
Alison, an oil painter, rents two apartments in Queens; she lives in one and uses the other to restore her paintings. She works at a cosmetic company in the daytime, and spends her spare time modeling.
I did all kinds of work in NYC:
Fashion PR, media editor, stylist, and gallery assistant.
I ran around the city all day long in my high heels, carried all my heavy work stuff in my handbag.
I dealt with jerks, made random chit-chat with strangers.
But I accomplished a lot, getting job offers from four companies including the Metropolitan Museum of Art that I currently working for.
生活在纽约的人都得有一颗I don’t give a shit的强心脏。
My mom told me I was very shy. I barely talked to strangers when I was a child. She never thought that this little girl would turn out to be so cheeky. Living in New York pushed me to strengthen the ability to express myself to random people without minding others’ thought.
“It’s amazing how quickly you start to become your true self when you stop worrying about what people think.” Pauline, my best friend in US, told me this a year ago when we were in Boston. And now, I really understand what she meant.