The definition of culture shock is “the feeling of disorientation experienced by someone who is suddenly subjected to an unfamiliar culture, way of life, or set of attitudes.” I never thought that I would experience culture shock by just flying to the other side of the country, but I now know that is not the case. The pace of daily life in New York is faster and more competitive compared to anything I have experienced before.
The subway system was the first aspect of culture shock for me. The first night here after visiting Time Square understanding the difference between the uptown trains and downtown trains in addition to all the different numbers and letters and what they correlated to seemed impossible. As I watched others get on and off the subway with ease, I knew at that moment New York was unlike anywhere else I had ever visited.
While the subway system has gotten easier to understand overtime, I’ve learned the key to understanding the subway is knowing where the address and cross streets of your final destination. While this still is not a fail proof, it’s a process I am beginning to understand as I learn my way around this city.