When my bosses told me that they’d need me to go on an extended trip to NYC, I wasn’t too pleased to be ripped away from my beloved Los Angeles. We’d be traveling for well over a month and I couldn’t wrap my head around the fact that I’d be paying rent in LA for an apartment I wouldn’t be living in.
Add that to that the fact that we’d be there in the hottest, most humid months of the year and that I’d be limited to taking the kids to activities within walking distance of their apartment (no subways/taxis allowed), I was pretty sure I’d be going stir crazy from the minute we stepped off of the plane.
The truth of the matter is that I WAS stir crazy as soon as we got off the plane but only because I was on a plane ride with a number of small children–my charges included. I’ve decided, from this most recent experience, that I’m not suited to be a travel nanny.
My sour attitude wasn’t remedied by the fact that people in NYC have absolutely no consideration when total strangers (ME) go out of their way to perform niceties (like holding the elevator open for someone!) and the ever present din of honking taxis that make one’s anxiety skyrocket.
In short, within the first few minutes of having my feet firmly planted on the Newark, New Jersey soil (or asphalt, really, cracked and hot), I was ready to get back on the plane and go home.
That’s when I knew that I needed a serious attitude adjustment: there was no way I’d survive the entire trip if I didn’t take a few deep breaths and review the positives of my situation. Here are some of them:
- My living quarters, though a 30 minute trip from the apartment where I’ll be working, is completely separate from the family and is in a building that I deeply suspect doesn’t allow children at all. It has AC, a dishwasher, an in unit washer/dryer, and a gym–all things my apartment back home lacks.
- I have a lot more friends living in NYC than I previously suspected! And then I have friends of friends that are willing to keep this poor west coast stray company while she serves out her time in kiddie prison in the concrete jungle.
- Rain. It’ll probably rain here and I do miss it. But I don’t miss being caught IN it…so maybe I’ll stop this subject right here before it gets too messy.
- I’ll probably lose a ton of weight with the combination of sweating my butt off (literally) and walking everywhere so WAHOO!
- There’s a ton to do and see here that I’ve never done before (as my NYC experience has mostly centered around Time Square). And I hear some of it’s free, so there’s that.
- Everything is completely paid for–so that’s not a worry. Transportation, apartment, food (while on the clock). Woot!
- I’ll get time off. A lot of nannies that travel extensively with their families don’t actually get much time to themselves but I’ve been promised that I will.
- My boss gave me a new iPad mini upon my arrival. Hells yes for getting hand-me-down SWAG. This single handedly changed my perspective on the whole experience. If all else fails, I’m going to take that beautiful hunk of technology and zone out–preferably not while watching the kids.