New York

We’re already more than a month is the USA so we have a lot to catch up to! We’ll start at the beginning: Saying goodbye and the New York orientation. We’ll both write our own experience about this, because Flora left one week earlier!


I left the Netherlands at the 7th of August! The weekend before I left, my friends/coworkers threw me a surprise party (if one of you read this, thanks! I had so much fun that night!). On Sunday my family came by to say goodbye and on Monday and Tuesday my best friends came over!

August 7: My flight was at 9:15 so that meant that I had to be at the airport at 6:15. Saying goodbye to my parents and sister wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be, but that was probably because I was too excited to finally leave! I literally slept 6 hours on the 8 hour flight, so when we arrived in New York I wasn’t tired at all. After a long wait at the security and baggage claim we went to our hotel to drop our stuff. Our rooms weren’t ready yet so we went to a mall to fill some time. On our way back we got a flash flood warning so everyone was freaking out, but luckily there was nothing going on. Around 7, we had our first American diner and after that I went to the pool with some friends to fill some time. After that we all hang out in one room until 11 PM to make sure we got over the jet lag as soon as possible.

August 8: At 5:45 the telephone in our room went off. Apparently the people before us used the wake up call and they forgot to end it! We couldn’t sleep anymore so we decided to get ready for our first day in NYC. For me it was the third time in New York, so I knew what to expect. We started our day with a walk in Central Park, where a guide gave us a lot of information. After that we took the bus to Washington Square park where we had lunch (I had a Caesar salad with a pink drink from Starbucks). After that we went to Chelsea market to continue with a walk on the high line, this is an old train rail which they turned into a park. When we finished the walk, the bus took is to 34th street where we got some free time to go shopping or explore the city on our own. Around 6 we had diner at the hard rock cafe and some free time at Time Square. Around 9 the bus picked us up to go back to our hotel. The bus ride was really fun, because me and my other Duchies were screaming with the music and building a party.

August 9: This was going to be our last day in New York! The bus picked us up at 9:00 AM to go back to Manhattan were we went to the 9/11 memorial. Even Though I’ve already been there twice, it stays impressive to see and hear what happened. After that we went for a walk in the financial district and continued with sail so we could see the statue of liberty from really close. We got off the boat around 12, so it was time to eat our lunch at pier 51.From there we walked to the beginning of the Brooklyn bridge to walk to Brooklyn. The view from the bridge was amazing and we took a lot of pretty pictures.

Around 2 PM the bus picked us up and took is to Coney Island. During the bus ride me and some other duchies brought a box so we we’re building our own little party. At Coney Island we went in a crazy roller coaster and we had our first American milkshake at I Hop. Even Though we were all really full, it was time to go to a pizza place to have dinner. We had to hurry a little because we had to be at the top of the rock at 8. The view there was amazing! After that it was time to go back to the hotel. During the ride back we got in a fight with the German people because we were listening to Dutch music and they didn’t really appreciate that, luckily we controlled the box so we continued listening to our favorite music! When we got back to the hotel we all went to sleep because the next day it was time to finally go to our host families! 

August 10: Today it was finally time to go to my host family. I had to be at the airport at 9:30 and my flight left 10:45! One of the friends I made in New York had to be at the same terminal so we I didn’t have to wait alone. 

I’ll tell how my arrival at my host family was in another blog post! But if you want to see something off my new york orientation you can watch a video on YouTube channel Teenmag by Korthom about New York (It is in Dutch).


I had a little more time in The Netherlands because I left on the 14th of August 2019. I already had my goodbye party on my birthday (the 5th of July); my parents threw me a surprise party to celebrate my graduation, my birthday and to say my goodbyes to everyone.  In the few weeks I had left after that, I just spent most of my time with my friends and family until the day came I had to leave. I didn’t want to have a lot of people at the airport because I already knew that would be too much to say goodbye to at once so I decided to just take my parents, sister and boyfriend. I didn’t know how hard it was going to be until then. The few weeks before I left I didn’t cry one time when I said my last goodbyes so it all hit at once. 

When we got in the plane we first flew to New York for the orientation of 3 days. When we arrived at the Newark airport we first went to the Double Tree by Hilton hotel and dropped our bags. After that, we went to the shopping mall to eat or shop something but I didn’t really do anything because I was still really shocked and emotional about the fact that I wasn’t going to see my family and friends in 10 months (I did have a milkshake between the tears tho). After eating some pizza back in the hotel we went to bed because the jet lag was real. 

After a little sleep (I couldn’t sleep very well) it was time for the first day in New York. we first had breakfast in the hotel but because of the time differences I wasn’t really hungry (it was a weird time to eat for me). At around 8:15 the bus picked us up to go to Central park. Because we were with a German organization as well, a few of our organization needed to go with a taxi so when we arrived to the park we first had to wait for them before our tour guide started. It was really hot but super pretty! After Central park we went to the Grand Central Terminal from New York. This was pretty cool because a lot of movies and series were recorded here and now I was standing there too! Our next stop was Washington Square park to have lunch. There was a man who brought his piano to the park ad started playing and singing. After lunch we went to Chelsea Market. Right after we went to the High Line because we could just walk to that. When we got done, the bus took us to 34th street where we could go shopping or eat something. I went with some friends I made to some shops just to check it out (I didn’t buy anything because my suitcase was already too big). For dinner, we went to the hard rock cafe. 

We took some pictures here and had some food. After this we went to Times Square. It was so weird to finally see it. Even when it got dark, the whole square was still so light that it looked like it was in the middle of the day. At around 9 o'clock we took the bus back to our hotel. 

On the third day in New York, we went to the 9/11 memorial (Ground Zero). The tour guide told some stuff about it and it was pretty interesting. It was definitely one of the things I thought were most interested to visit when you are in New York. after having a toilet break in the World Trade Center station next to Ground Zero, we walked through the financial district to Pier 51. From there we hopped on a boat to go see The Statue of Liberty from up close. 

After getting off the boat, we had our lunch there too. When we were done, it was finally my turn (with the group I was in) to take a taxi to the Brooklyn Bridge. When we arrived we walked from one way to the other. It was really old and the path was small but it was also pretty extraordinary to see it all from the bridge. On the bridge, there were a lot of people selling stuff like drinks and food but there was also my biggest fear; snakes. There were 2 guys with huge snakes around their necks. They were hanging the snakes on random peoples neck, that scared me so much that I screamed and ran to the other side. For the rest was the walk pretty fun. When we arrived in Brooklyn the bus picked us up to go to Coney Island, there me and someone else  bought a smoothie and met up with some other people. We took some pictures and walked over the fair. When we wanted to leave someone forgot the time so we had to wait 15 minutes before we could leave for diner at the best pizza place in town. It was the first time I was really hungry, so I was looking forward to it. After that we went to the Top of the Rock to enjoy the amazing view there. A lot of people were in the way to take good pictures but it was still a lot of fun! After that we went back to the hotel. We packed our bags because the next day it was time to leave. We said goodbye and hang out in someones room before we went to bed. 

When I woke up two girls in my room had already left for the airport. The girl that was still in my room, had to take the same shuttle to the airport so that was really nice that I still knew someone. At the airport I  facetimed my family for a while. After that I stepped on the plane and that was the end of my New York adventure. I was now ready to start my amazing exchange year!



Ron de Rooij

Hi Joy,

Really good idea from your teacher to let you write a blog. Of course it is great to immediately have a diary of this beautiful experience.

I already enjoyed reading your first report. And your english is good too ... :-)

Have fun and enjoy it to the maximum.

greetings from Miranda and Ron

Ronald Traa

Wow, just a couple of weeks in de states and seen so many. And even more to come. I can’t wait to read your next story. Have fun Joy & Flora!👊🏻😉

Elly Beelen en Lou Beelen

Wat leuk om jullie zo te volgen.
Zo kijken wij mee in jullie fantastisch jaar in Amerika.
Veel plezier en wij kijken alweer uit naar jullie nieuwe verslag.
Groetjes 😘


Fijn dat jullie het zo naar je zin hebben. Wij (papa en ik) kijken uit naar het volgende verslag.



Heel gaaf om te zien dat je het avontuur bent aan gegaan. Bij de jump had je het er al over!

Geniet er met volle teugen van voor je het weet ben je terug en maak je de deuren daar open en zijn de wc’s laag Haha

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