Through this blog, we will spotlight Otterbein students who are engaging in internships and professional experiences in a variety of industries and geographic locations. We will also share tips and advice on searching for internships and making the most of internship experiences.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Cordray in Colorado, Part 4: Making Friends in a New City

Well I have completed five weeks out of my 15 week internship and can't believe that I'm already one-third of the way done! I'm getting very settled into my work environment and the internship is coming along really well! Since I've already talked about the actual internship in depth, I thought that for my next blog post I'd talk a bit about how I'm spending my time outside of my internship.
Garden of the Gods

In case you didn't know, I came out to Colorado Springs knowing only my 60 year-old aunt who I live with. She's awesome, but I have no one my own age to do things with. So, for the first few weeks I was kind of a loner. I would get home from work and go for a walk around the neighborhood. I found an awesome park right down the street and went to Garden of the Gods, a beautiful park that's really close and just had fun exploring by myself. But after a month I was dying to have some fun experiences with fellow human beings! So I decided to turn to the people I work with.

Now my co-workers are mostly 35-45 year olds with children who have no intention of hanging out with a 21-year-old intern on their nights and weekends. But two weekends ago, I was asked if I would walk in a parade to promote the Fine Arts Center's new musical, Reefer Madness. Of course, I said yes and on Valentines Day, I joined a few of my co-workers and walked in the parade. It was a Mardi Gras themed parade, so we all dressed in green for the show and threw beads at people and handed out fliers and it was a blast! I mean how many people get to do stuff like that on their internship?! 

My co-worker, Kim, and I at the parade
After the parade, my boss had said that we were all invited to a party back at his house (a beautiful house up in the mountains) but everyone who I worked with started to leave! They were saying things like " I have to get back to the kids" and "my husband is waiting for me" blah blah blah. So I started to think, "Well I'm not going to go to a party where I don't know anyone!" But then I thought "What else do I have to do today? I might as well stay out and have some fun!" So I ended up going to his house for the party and I'm so glad I did! I chatted with the CEO of the Fine Arts Center, who I rarely see in the office, but had a great conversation with. I met the mayor of Manitou Springs (the city where my boss lives) and I sang with some local musicians who were sitting around in the living room having a jam session! It was so much fun, and I was so incredibly happy that I had stayed, even though I knew probably three people to begin with!

Similarly, this past Friday, I decided to go out with a few co-workers to see my boss in a play that he was starring in. I got there super early and looked like a weirdo with no friends, but again I'm so glad I went because we had a great time! 

So the morale of the story is that although coming home from work every night, eating dinner and watching Netflix alone before bed sounds wonderful and easy, it's not really making the most of my time here. Going out and actually experiencing things with people is a much better way to spend my time! Even though it's not easy to find people to do things with, take a chance and really put yourself out there and get to know the people that you can, because that's what being in a new place is all about! You won't meet anyone new sitting at home alone watching Netflix!

And with that said, I'm going to watch an episode on Netflix before bed! Thanks so much for reading! Also, I said in my last post that the weather here was awesome, but I seemed to have jinxed myself because this weekend it snowed about a foot and is now in the negative temperatures - not fun! I feel like I'm back in Ohio! 

Until next time!

Dillon Cordray
Music and Business '15

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