I have always been interested in the United States. Several years ago I wanted to learn more about this country. Since I believe it is best to experience a country for a longer period of time, I decided to apply for an internship. For some reason I ended up living in a city I wasn’t so interested in at first; New York City. That’s right. The city that never sleeps. A city everyone wants to visit and everyone talks about. Still, I never intended going there. Nonetheless, I ended up working for an architecture firm located in Midtown New York and lived there for six months. Not surprisingly, it was one of my best experiences ever. I love New York!
The internship took place in 2008. For six months I worked at architecture firm Rietveld Architects. The company was founded by Margaret and Rijk Rietveld. The New York office is located on a convenient 600 meters walk from Times Square.
I rented an apartment in Lower Manhattan, between the Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridge. This resulted in a 30 minute travel from my apartment to the office, which I preferred to do by bike. During the course of my internship I biked on every avenue and almost every street of Manhattan. This way I truly got to know the Big Apple.
Together with Rijk (leading architect) I worked on many projects. These include City Hall The Hague, a conference hotel and an urban planning project. Besides working at the architecture firm I experienced New York City whenever possible. Also I visited cities like Boston, Philadelphia and Washington DC. One of the many highlights of my stay was the 2008 Presidential Election. On election day I was in Harlem, together with thousands of Obama supporters. In January 2009 I witnessed history in Washington DC. I was lucky to be at the Inauguration of Barack Obama in the capital of the USA. Below are some photographs of my stay in The States.
You guessed it! The red arrow points to the office of Rietveld Architects.
The Film Center Building. The office is on the top floor.
I’m in the middle-right of this photo (next to the window)
New York City
Free kayaking in the Hudson River. You can see the Statue of Liberty in the middle.
View from the Staten Island Ferry.
View from the Empire State Building.
View from the Empire State Building.
The office of Rietveld Architects was located on a mere 600 meters walk from Times Square.
The shiny towers of the Time Warner Center.
One of my favorite skyscrapers in New York, the Hearst Tower.
The Brooklyn Bridge (can you see the waterfall?)
The world famous Guggenheim Museum
The Flatiron building during sunset.
View from the Brooklyn Boulevard.
Tribute in Light, an art installation of 88 searchlights placed next to the site of the World Trade Center to create two vertical columns of light in remembrance of the September 11 attacks.
I went to the US Open quarter finals.
View from Jazz @ Time Warner Center during the New York Marathon.
More sports. Basketball, the NY Knicks.
And even more sports. A rodeo in Madison Square Garden.
Ground Zero and the World Financial Center.
One out of many times I visited Central Park.
New York Water Taxi in front of the NY skyline.
Reenactment at Governors Island.
Admiral’s house at Governors Island.
The Queen Mary 2 viewed from Governors Island.
My view from the office of Rietveld Architects on Veteran’s Day 2008. President George W. Bush visited the Intrepid on this day (you can see Marine One, the President’s helicopter, on deck).
Election Day 2008.
Before going to Harlem, I spent some time at Rockefeller Center.
Afterwards I went to an Obama campaign office in Harlem, NY.
I was in Harlem (125th street, opposite of the Bill Clinton office) when Barack Obama was elected president. A very special moment.
Winter in Central Park.
Winter Garden at the World Financial Center.
Manhattan at sunset.
During my stay in New York City I visited several other cities, like Philadelphia and Boston.
Washington DC: The Inauguration of Barack Obama
During my internship Barack Obama and John McCain were all over the news. Since I’m really interested in American Politics, I consider myself lucky doing an internship in the US during the elections of 2008.
Wether Obama or McCain would win, I wanted to go to the nation’s capital for the Inauguration in January 2009. That’s why I booked my hostel prior to election day (in September). On a side note, this saved me lots of money, since I payed normal fees instead of the ridiculous fees hotels charged in and around Washington DC after Obama was elected. Obviously, I didn’t anticipate for such a historic election and Inauguration. Needless to say, I had a great time in DC.