Posts Tagged ‘exploration’

Seeing Sights

Friday, July 15th, 2022

As I began my journey towards letting go of perfectionism and taking things one step at a time, I started wondering how I could find ways to really enjoy the process and take advantage of the resources or opportunities that I had. I looked towards the community around me, and found that my university’s diverse student body was a great place to start. My peers came from a variety of cultures and backgrounds and were all more than willing to share their insight and experiences about the places that they’ve been, and I found myself invigorated by their passion. Surrounded by people who were so enthusiastic about exploring the world, I grew curious about other places and cultures as well, and soon took up traveling.

The view outside a plane window has become quite common to me now, but I can’t help but take a photo as a memento every time!

When I first left the comfort of home for an education in Abu Dhabi, I had no idea what I should expect, and I admit I had my biases and misconceptions about the region as well. But living within the city and learning, both through classes and through daily interactions, about the country and culture opened my eyes to a different understanding of a place that I had no familiarity with, and I gradually began to view Abu Dhabi as another, albeit temporary, “home.” It became comforting for me to look out my window and see endless stretches of sand, walk through the city with a cup of karak in hand, and chat with local vendors about their time in the country. Stepping out of my comfort zone meant that I had the chance to witness a culture unlike my own, and within it, I found a beautiful sense of growth. 

I was very lucky that my university takes a very global perspective on education, and opportunities like studying abroad are greatly encouraged within the community. Not only that, my fellow students are all more than passionate about globetrotting, and every break from studies is seen by many as another chance to plan a trip on a budget. Naturally, if I was able, I followed along, eager to witness the many wonders that foreign destinations held in store. I took the chances I had to see monuments of history, such as the Parthenon in Athens or the Panama Canal, and I felt that through these travels, my view of the world expanded little by little. I understood that I had the privilege to see more of the world, and as such I wanted to take advantage of it to learn as much as possible. I wanted to become a more educated and open-minded individual, willing to learn and hear from other perspectives not just because I should, but also because they originate from a background drastically different from my own, and consequently are a source for me to learn from as well. 

Beyond just education and enrichment, I believe that traveling has also taught me a lot of valuable lessons about life and about myself. I’ve learned to be cautious about my surroundings, and I’ve also felt deeply, that despite my perfectionist disposition, things can rapidly spiral out of control, and as such it’s much more important for me to be able to adapt than it is that I have everything planned out to the smallest detail. I have no shortage of travel mishaps that have taught me this, whether it’s sprinting through the airport to catch my flight right as the gate was closing, encountering issues with passports and visas, or being stranded without internet connection in an unfamiliar place. These incidents have tested my patience, my stress management, and my critical thinking time and time again, and I believe I’ve grown all the more resilient for it. Most importantly, I think I’ve gotten problem solving down to a systematic approach: stay calm (and sit down if necessary), take stock of the situation, understand and inquire about any solutions, contact someone for help if the situation allows, and negotiate. I’ve found that more often than not, keeping calm about the situation is the key to resolving it efficiently, because the answers are more often than not simpler than I tend to think, but when panic overrides my system, I miss that understanding completely. 

One other major thing I’ve learned through these mishaps is that people are also kinder than I tend to expect. I have a tendency to be wary about others when I’m in a foreign place, and while that definitely is necessary and important to remember, I’ve also safely resolved a lot of issues with the kindness of others, especially because it’s almost impossible to anticipate everything that might go awry. There have been lovely old ladies who pointed out who to talk to when I was having issues in the airport and helped make sure I made it to my flight, and there have been kind locals who, despite language barriers, drove me to my hotel when I couldn’t find any other way to make it back. 

A handicrafts stall in Panama City – the vendors were really welcoming and helpful despite the language barrier

Traveling can be stressful and nerve-inducing, especially when you tend to overthink and seek control of things like I do, but my trips are amongst the most challenging and rewarding experiences that I’ve had. As I discussed in my previous blog, I found that wanting everything to be “perfect” stopped me from taking a lot of chances, and traveling was perhaps the biggest step I took towards breaking past that fear. I immersed myself in a “risk” and found, despite the dangers that seemed to be lurking, that the world was a much larger and more interesting place than I ever would have imagined. 


Use this student discount for a place to store your belongings when you pack up for your next big trip!


By: Fiona Lin

Fiona Lin is a rising senior at New York University’s Abu Dhabi Campus pursuing a double major in Literature and Creative Writing and Art and Art History. She enjoys traveling, drinking tea, and learning new languages. In her free time, you can find her reading web novels or playing video games.


For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourages them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing, and services.  At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings and watch our YouTube video showing off some of New York City’s finest students during the Welcome Week of 2015.

Share

Sunnyside

Monday, August 9th, 2021

It’s about time I share my weekend habit. Every weekend, I like to explore a new neighborhood of New York City. Besides being an excuse for exercise, I do it because in a city with hundreds of years of history and cultures, walking through each neighborhood provides unique stories to learn from. The buildings, people on the street, street art, the food, parks, places of interest, heck even the placement of trash cans on the sidewalk can share what life was and is in each neighborhood. All walks of life can be found in New York City and I’m fascinated by which places can say what about them.

The neighborhood I visited last weekend was Sunnyside in Queens, a ten minute ride on the 7 train from Grand Central. It’s a diverse spot in an already diverse borough. Here, tall apartment buildings exist alongside homes with garages and a Turkish mosque could be found right next to a Korean preschool. Industry has been pushed next to the railyards, being replaced with playgrounds and bars and restaurants. Tall trees line the sidewalks and children ride on bikes or are pushed in strollers by their parents. It gives a suburban feel to an area not too far away from the urban boom in neighboring Long Island City.

Speaking of suburbs, an interesting spot in this neighborhood is the Sunnyside Gardens Historic District, one of the first planned communities in the nation. It was built in 1928 inspired by an English idea of urban planning called the garden city. With rows of flat bricked brown buildings distinguished by the hedges and shrubbery in front of them or the ivy creeping up the walls, it feels more like walking through the Shire than America. It also has one of two private parks in the entire city which is a big boo but at least the people in the tennis courts there looked like they were having fun. 

When I walk, I get hungry, so I like to stop by a well known spot in the neighborhood to eat. In Sunnyside, a well-known spot was Donovan’s Pub, an Irish themed pub that looked like a medieval cottage inside and had apparently one of the best burgers in Queens. Its reputation did not disappoint as the burger itself tasted good and the bun was crisp. Not too costly on the money side, but if you’re looking to find a cheap place to eat, there are options. Right after leaving the pub, I spotted a place where I could get tacos for two dollars each. Too bad I was full. In the springtime, there is a food festival called Taste of Sunnyside which plays to the neighborhood’s strength in diversity, providing food from Colombian to Italian. Covid threw a wrench into it as it did to everything, so I’m hopeful that it will start again in 2022. 

Overall, Sunnyside was an enjoyable place. It’s a neighborhood full of life and renewal. It had its loud parts from the rumbling of the 7 Train and the Long Island Rail Road and it had its quiet parts in-between where the city would vanish and you could be left to think for yourself. It’s definitely a neighborhood I recommend to walk through and I’ll definitely come back. In the larger context, it’s been another neighborhood down in the many more I have yet to see. Hopefully, I’ll get to them all one weekend at a time.



By: Jared Skoro

Jared Skoro is a junior at NYU Gallatin studying a mix of English, Political Science, and Psychology. In his free time, he enjoys reading, hiking, and exploring a new neighborhood of the city every weekend.

For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourages them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing, and services.  At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings and watch our YouTube video showing off some of New York City’s finest students during the Welcome Week of 2015.

Share

What is Wanderlust and How Can I Cure It?

Tuesday, October 10th, 2017

When you think of the word “travel,” most people think of going to a faraway place by catching a bus, train, plane, or driving for hours outside of town. They are overwhelmed by the thought of saving money, clipping coupons, and living off of ramen just to see a new concrete jungle. However, once they come back, they are suddenly overcome by the “travel bug,” otherwise known as wanderlust. But can wanderlust only be fulfilled by going away? Is there a way to satisfy this craving for adventure without leaving the confines of your own town? I would argue that you can.

The definition of wanderlust by the Merriam-Wester Dictionary site is a “strong longing for or impulse toward wandering.” What this definition doesn’t capture is paired illusion of feeling stuck where you are, both in your location and in your routine.

https://burst.shopify.com/photos/city-woman-exercising-outdoors

https://burst.shopify.com/photos/city-woman-exercising-outdoors

When I came back home from studying abroad in South Korea for a semester, I almost immediately felt trapped. Suddenly access transportation was slow, I couldn’t make it to the other side of the country without a lot of money or even more time, and the burden of a new, rigorous quarter at school made it impossible for me to mimic the freedom I had almost 7,000 miles away from home. “Wanderlust” had become a prison that no one warned me about in the pre-departure presentation months before.

One thing I’ve learned in my time in college is when life gives you lemons, you don’t just make lemonade; you make lemon tarts.

There are three options you have when it comes to handling wanderlust. One is simply ignoring it, which is kind of like eating the lemons. The second, the lemonade, is taking a vacation during a break and exploring as much as possible. My favorite option is the third: adopting the explorer’s mindset, and turning everyday life into an adventure. Lemon. Tarts.

https://flic.kr/p/cwd1Q9

https://flic.kr/p/cwd1Q9

What do people do when they travel? It’s not all about the Statue of Liberty, the Space Needle, the Reading Terminal Market, or Time Square. People look for new experiences that they don’t normally have in their day-to-day routine. By acquiring the explorer’s mindset, that there is an adventure hiding everywhere, you can work on your wanderlust every day. Take a new route to class, check out new restaurants, or go on a date in a new neighborhood. You don’t have to become a tourist to shake up the monotony.

Humans are resistant to change, and I’m completely guilty of this. My first few months home were just me stuck in my old routine before traveling to Korea. But one day I decided to visit a friend in a neighborhood I had never been to. Then I went to another part of the city for happy hour with my best friend from middle school. And yes, I did make a couple of bus trips to nearby cities during long weekends over the summer. As time went on, I found that the bugging wanderlust that had cornered me was getting what it wanted.

I’m not saying that you don’t need a big trip to Europe or a backpacking road trip across Southeast Asia. At some point, you will want more than whatever you’re doing. If watching videos on YouTube is like a bandage, scaling your hometown is a painkiller, then that big trip abroad is the trip to the doctor’s office.

I hate to say this, but wanderlust is completely incurable. In my travels, I’ve met people who have explored the world and still feel that pang to keep moving. The best strategy to keep wanderlust at bay is to constantly challenge yourself to see new places, experience new things, and maintain your thirst for knowledge. And maybe bake a tray of lemon tarts.

___________________________________________________________________________________

By Jada Gossett

Jada is a Campus Clipper publishing intern who is majoring in Psychology and working on a Certificate in Creative Writing and Publishing at Drexel University. After traveling to South Korea for study abroad in the Fall of 2016, she has undertaken a new side venture as a lifestyle blogger determined to get college students to get out of their comfort zone. If you like her posts, you can find more of her work here or follow her on Twitter or Instagram. For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourage them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing, and services.  

At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings.

Share

From New York to…Amsterdam

Tuesday, June 27th, 2017

New York and Amsterdam. These two cities together have a context that brings to mind debauchery and nighttime revelry that you’re bound to regret the next morning. But that’s not what we’re talking about today. Today, we’re talking about confusion.

Any city is confusing if you’ve never lived there before. You don’t know the neighborhoods or the areas to avoid, and you’re bound to get lost the first few times you visit. Sometimes this is fun and you can find new places, but most of the time it’s just inconvenient.

So here are a few tips to help you get the most out of your time in both of these gorgeous cities:

http://wallup.net/wp-content/

http://wallup.net/wp-content/

Taken by Jainita Patel

Taken by Jainita Patel

 

Roads and Rivers.

Every place has a certain road or river that brings a level of comfort since you know that when you find it, you can find your way home. The best way to orient yourself in either city is to find that one road. In New York, for the first few years that road was Broadway. No matter where I was, if I could find Broadway, I could get home even if my phone was dead. As time moved on and I switched apartments, my main landmark became the East or Hudson River. In New York, we get lucky as we’re on an island and a grid system. Try going to Boston or Amsterdam and this becomes a little more complicated. In Amsterdam, I’d suggest making the Prins Hendrikkade road and s100 highway your main roads. These are a bit on the outskirts, but they encompass most of the Centrum or downtown. If you go past that, the Amstel Canal is your best bet.

 

Neighborhoods.

Familiarize yourself with the neighborhoods before you decide to go to visit them. I’m more comfortable downtown than uptown, but once a few of my friends moved to the Heights and Harlem, I decided to find my main roads up there just incase I couldn’t charge my phone at night. This might come in handy, especially out in the boroughs. In Amsterdam, the canals are beautiful, but they can seriously confuse you, especially if you decide to live outside of Centrum, so it might be good to familiarize yourself with the main roads ahead of time as well.

 

Public Transport.

You don’t have to know where you are if you can find the one train station that will take you anywhere—or at least home after a long night. In New York, Midtown is probably a good place to start. 42nd St. and 34th St. have most of the lines you’ll need to journey in Manhattan. If you get on the wrong train, don’t worry. Just climb abroad one going back to that central station and try again. NYC’s subways are tricky to get used to at first, but in a week you’ll get it down. The maps are pretty easy to read and are available in most subway carts and stations. At Amsterdam Central Station, you can find a metro, bus, or tram to wherever you need to go and can easily purchase a temporary OV-chipkaart at the station.

 

Embrace It.

If you have time to get lost, embrace it. You’ll find some of the coolest spots when you’re not looking for them or staring at your GPS trying to see where you missed that last turn. Amsterdam, especially is beautiful and relatively safe to wander at night. On the canals you’ll see some of the most beautiful sights a city has to offer. New York isn’t short on its beautiful spots either. East River Park is stunning and the sight of the Freedom Tower is something to marvel at when the sun is setting.

 

http://brokelyn.com/

http://brokelyn.com/

Taken by Jainita Patel

Taken by Jainita Patel

And of course, if you have a GPS app on your phone, you don’t even have to worry about this, so enjoy yourself! Get lost on purpose and let the freedom of it wash over you. And who knows? If you like getting lost in New York or Amsterdam, hopefully you’ll get a chance to visit the other some day.

Stay rad,
Jainita

__________________________________________________________________________________

By Jainita Patel

Jainita is a Campus Clipper publishing intern who is double majoring in English and Environmental Studies at NYU. Though writing fiction and painting are her two main passions, she also has a love of travel and adventure that has taken her across the globe.  Jainita writes under the pseudonym Jordan C. Rider. If you like her posts, you can find more of her work here or follow her on Twitter. For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourage them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing and services.  

At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings and watch our YouTube video showing off some of New York City’s finest students during the Welcome Week of 2015. 

Share