Every year I start stressing by the time Spring rolls around about finding a summer job or internship. For the past two years I have been extremely lucky in getting offers early on. Last summer I was an orientation leader for my school and this year I am a corporate communications intern for a fashion company in Florida. At the start of my internship I found myself, once again, in a city where I didn’t know anyone that was extremely far from home. Something I haven’t done since my freshman year of college.
There are around 20 or so other interns for the company I work for so one would think we would have banded together from the start. However, given the size of the company and the fact that we all are working in separate departments, we hardly saw one another. This past weekend a group of us were finally able to spend time hanging out and getting to know one another. So few of us are from this area that we decided to spend the weekend exploring. Last weekend my roommate and I checked out a few of the local shopping centers and had a wine night while watching a few episodes of Chopped Grillmasters.
I received text messages from a string of numbers I didn’t recognize making plans to hangout by the pool and order pizza Friday night. Those plans were altered and we all ended up grabbing pizza and wine at a restaurant called Grimaldi’s. We sat around our table for hours chatting away and making plans to meet up the following morning for a trip to Captiva.
I love going to the beach and thought I had seen quite a bit but nothing compared to Captiva Beach! The weather was warm and balmy, the sky was a brilliant shade of blue and the water refreshing despite it not being cold. We would wade into the water and see pods of sting-ray swim past us. Dolphins weren’t much too far off from the shore, surfacing and flipping in the water. Whenever we started to get pruny, we would head back to our towels and lay out for a while. There were so many beautiful shells (something my grandmother used to always love looking for whenever we went to the beach growing up) that one could just walk down the strip and have an instant collection.
Later that night we tried out a restaurant and bar that someone had recommended. Although it wasn’t our scene, we stayed for a short while and left for late night IHOP pancakes. I had no clue they came out with cupcake pancakes and holy moly those things are so sweet and tasty! Within 48 hours a group that hardly knew one another were already becoming close-bonded friends.
I think it’s important no matter where you are to make it a point to explore. Whether you’re new to the area or have been there for years, there is always a new restaurant or attraction or store to check out. It also helps someone new to an area to meet people and make friends. I know I love to be a homebody sometimes and stay within my comfort zone which is why I also love to push myself to go someplace I’ve never been before surrounded by people I don’t know. Everyday it brings a fun, new little adventure.