The blizzard was definitely coming and for the days leading up to Friday it was all the news could talk about. The news in America isn’t really like news at home, I’d call it more news-tainment and you will never, ever, see a story about something outside America. They were really doing their best to convince the public that this one would to wipe everywhere in the North-East off the face of the planet. Headlines like “you will all die in blizzard tornadoes, and then the white walkers from Game of Thrones will eat you” kinda shit.
I arrived at my new hostel right as the first snowflakes started falling and just sat on the windowsill drinking hot chocolate, watching movies and watching outside being transformed. By the next morning things had deteriorated slightly with around 30cm falling overnight and now another 30cm expected. So what does any Australian do when they hear severe weather is on the way and they have no plans? Fuckin’ bonza mates! I put on every bit of snow gear I had, including ski goggles and went out to see how many shenanigans I could get into. The next 3 hours were spent walking around Central Park which now looked more like Siberia and down to Midtown in winds which were easily gusting to 100 between all the buildings. By this time the snow plows and salt couldn’t keep up with how fast the snow was falling so everyone basically gave up, flipped their desk and let the snow start piling up in drifts in the main roads. My fingers and toes had been numb for around 30 minutes so it was time to get back to warm up in the hostel and see if my face was still there.
While chilling in the common area with a hot chocolate I meet an Aussie girl, Jess, who is pretty keen to go to the nearest bar and have a Blizzard lock-in. We battle through the snow drifts to a nearby bar which is packed and pretty soon we are drinking with a couple of local guys and one of their girlfriends. They are all awesome and after a few too many drinks we decide to head outside for some antics. Earlier in the afternoon the roads had been shut to traffic and along with this snow had kept falling the whole time so there is easily 60cm of snow everywhere. There we were standing in the middle of Broadway with no traffic and fresh powder up to our knees. We decide to seize the once in a lifetime opportunity and make some snow angels in the middle of one of the busiest roads in the city. Being legends they then invite us back to their apartment and make us soup and cocktails.
The next day I meet a Swiss girl, Nadine, and English guy, Joshua, in my room who then introduce me to a bigger group of Americans, English and Australians. We all get along like mates who have known each other for years and for the next couple of nights we have a wild time celebrating Australia day in the local Aussie bar. Me and Nadine get along really well and end up spending the next few days exploring the city, making the greatest snowman ever and eating every unhealthy American food we could find.
After meeting so many incredible people in one week it really brings home one the worst part about travelling and It’s not just for people who are travelling alone either. You have to say goodbye to everyone all the time. There is something about travelling, whether it’s being more open to new people or just having a lot of like-minded people together, that means you skip months of normal friendship or relationship building and become so close within such a short amount of time. After a few days you then have to say goodbye to these people. It’s basically a breakup. You always say that you will see them again with the best intentions but after past experience I know that most of the time it’s just impossible. So, with knowing all of this you say goodbye. It’s painful to the point of being exhausting after a while and definitely doesn’t help with the loneliness of travelling alone. At least you leave with some great memories but holy shit it’s tough.