Why I Came to New York City With Nothing


Virginia to New York CityFrom Virginia to New York City

Boredom brought me to New York City, although most people come for fame and fortune. Newport News, Virginia is my hometown, but I just got sick of looking at it. After you see the same stuff for 30 years, you just get to that point and it’s time to go.

Without a clue or a dollar, consequently, I bought an e-ticket and hopped on an Amtrak train to Penn Station. I lived in NYC when it was a treacherous place, so surely I could handle the “Care Bear” version. However, maybe I would also succeed at failing. The streets are lined up with plenty of reminders of what happens to fails in NYC, and it’s not hard to end up that way. Homelessness can happen to anyone and fast.  NYC doesn’t care about your Ph. D and will throw you out on the street just as easy as someone who didn’t graduate from high school. Nonetheless, in January 2016, I arrived in NYC with only the clothes on my back, a backpack and my wits.

My plan was to check into a homeless shelter, save up some cash and finally find an apartment. Finding a job isn’t necessary, since I’m a digital nomad.  I can work anywhere where there’s an internet connection, so I’m not completely without money. If things fell apart, worst case scenario, I’d just catch a ticket back to Virginia. However, NYC is only expensive if you choose to live that way. The temptations are all around, but you have to not live beyond your means.

Why I came to New York City? Basically, because I felt like it. After all, humans traveled over 7,000 miles across an ocean and most survived just fine; I’m just going 430 with amenities at my fingertips.


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