Imagine that scene from Yeh Jawaani hai Deewani where Ranbir plays a travel buff traveling places with tripod on his shoulders and a DSLR in his hand.
The first time I saw YJHD, my instincts told me that recreating the same scene was in my bucket list and guess what? It did happen while I was job hunting on streets of New York last summer!
An unexpected Internship that I landed up in Manhattan gave a life enriching experience. My 47 days with The South Asian Times as a reporter in New York gave me the best international work experience ever!
My five best take away’s from the internship were :
- The feeling of earning in Dollars was nothing compared to eating Hyderabadi Biryani in streets of Flushing, Queens!
- Indian Media in New York is huge, Its like a Mini India settled in parts of Queen and Long Island.
- Americans love immigrants, and specially they love Indians. If you are a Mumbaikar, then there comes more love for you!
- H1B visa is very tough, you probably will have to marry an American to settle in New York
- Indian Consulate on 44th street, Manhattan serves the best Rajma in the whole New York. (P.S : They don’t sell, these are perks of reporting which only Journalists in New York can enjoy)
I had always dreamt of working in New York and this internship helped me fulfill it. From interviewing Nitin Gadkari to actually conversing with Pandit Birju Maharaj ji, the exposure I got was tremendous. What I could not compromise was on food, and thanks to some lovely colleagues and roommates who prepared Indian food for me whenever I craved for. The happiness of eating Dal Chawal with pickle, in the balcony from where I could see WTC, is just indescribable. .
But wait, What New York taught me, is the power of Digital Journalism. Reporting on streets and interviewing celebrities is enjoyable in itself, but the art of covering a whole city and reporting events through just a smartphone was something new to take.
Do you want to know how I spent my weeks at City University of New York learning the skills of reporting through just a smartphone( P.S: You have to know this because CUNY also took me to buzz feed office and I cannot wait to tell you about it!)