Sunday, January 24, 2010

The Other interns & Housing

In preparation for the internship there are many things to consider.

Where will I live?

Are the other interns cool? Can I afford this?

There are a million little questions like that. In reality, this is only one question.

What will happen to every aspect of my life?

Any way you put the question into perspective it seems overwhelming. My approach personally, has been to not think about it too much at all. I mean I have 3 weeks till I leave, I shouldn't be thinking about how I can afford it, how I will get to work, what I will do with my free time, are the other interns going to like me, where I will work when I get back...Okay...This is EXACTLY the kind of stuff I have been trying to keep out of my mind! Don't panic, don't freak out! Everything is going to work out. Everything will just fall into place. If the interns don't like me, tough. If I am not good at letterpress printmaking, it's ok, because it still looks good on a resume. If I run out of money I will get a part time job, or sell stuff on eBay. The main issue I am going to have is getting a housing situation set up. This is not an issue that I can just sit back and wait for.

I got an email a while back from the "Intern Wrangler" Bethany, who sent me the email addresses of the other interns. Up till this point, I had no idea how many people were going to be interns or where everyone was from. I found out that one of the interns was from Oregon, one was from Nebraska,and the third never really said. The guy from Oregon and the guy from ? needed housing much like myself. The Nebraska girl, had a place with friends. I have no idea where I am living, but hope to rent a place of my own with one of the other guys, which I guess would make it a place of 'our' own.

I never got the housing info that I was told about, so I contacted the interns. The Oregon intern was going to be in Nashville that weekend and said that we should hang out, and that he was going to be living there from this weekend all the way through the internship. The other interns gave me a couple of different places that sounded mostly like I would be renting the room out of someones house for 300-400 bucks a month. That doesn't sound entirely bad exactly, but the reality of it is that when I am a house guest, I am never fully comfortable. I am always wondering if I am doing something wrong. Did I leave the bathroom a mess? Will staying out late be a problem? Can I eat this? Can I change the channel? Feet on the coffee table: Wrong? Not to mention the fact that I would have tons of awkward conversation for the next two months.

I guess in my head I picture the "room for rent" scenario as having a small room to myself, and the rest of the house is not my space. I feel like I want to have my own space, where I can bring my friends when they are in town, where I can clean up messes at my own pace, eat what I want and watch what I want without worrying about stepping on anybody's toes.

So I looked into some of the places listed. One of the interns said that the Music city hostel is $675 monthly for the lowest rate. That is way too much money for my blood. I mean, I honestly do not have much money at all. My grandma helped me out and my mom has been holding onto my graduation money for close to a year because the original plan was for me to be gone in September or October instead of February of the next year.

So the hostel is out, and that room for rent in your attic is out, so where will I stay? Some interns have talked about how there is an apartment complex for rent where several Hatch interns have already stayed. The leases are short, and the apartments are affordable. This sounds like a great plan! So this weekend in an attempt to look into the whole housing situation, my family and I went to Nashville.

I worked Saturday morning from 7am-2pm, then went home packed and we were on the road. We got down there around 6pm and got a hotel in this big block of hotels before you reach downtown Nashville, then went to search for food. We ate at Santa Fe which had steak, hamburgers, and potatoes, but also served burritos and fajitas. If there was a way to eat beef, they had it.

After we ate, the Oregon intern said he had just made it to town and that we should hang out. I was ok with that, but we were on the way back to our room. When we got back I called him and he was in the middle of downtown seeing Hatch Show Print for the first time even though they were closed.

It sounded loud down there, and he never mentioned hanging out that night so I figured it was probably not a good idea anyway, since we had just drove all the way back and parking would be horrible on a Saturday night. He was staying at the Music City Hostel for a few nights, until he found a place. I told him we were going to go looking tomorrow, but he said he was busy until the afternoon. So we hung out and watched house in our hotel.

The next day we went to Opry Mills and wandered around for awhile, then went downtown. Hatch Show Print isn't open on Sunday's, so we went to the Hard Rock Cafe. They are expensive (15.99 for twisted mac and cheese?!?!), but they have this cool new thing where every booth has an interactive screen that lets you vote for videos, and look at their collection of memorabilia.

After lunch we went down the street to the Frist center to see the Georgia O'Keefe show. It was ok, but I just am not a big fan of O'Keefe, or the other abstract stuff in this dude's collection. He didn't really even have a consistent collection of O'Keefe's work, or any of her more famous style and imagery. Afterward, I called the Oregon intern and he said he had already found a place since talking to him the night before. He is renting a room from a couple who have a house (or an apartment, I don't remember which). So now it is just me, and the guy from ?.

I went to look at the apartment possibility. It is called Covenant Crossing, and it seems like a cool place. The rent would be around 700 a month for a 2 bedroom which seems reasonable to me, and it is 5 miles from downtown. Right now I am making this my first choice, but I need to find out what this "short lease" really is. In all of this, I believe that the lease amount is going to be my biggest issue. If the rent were expensive I would have to deal, but if I can only get a lease for a year, then that just won't work. I am not ready to leave Louisville for a year without some sort of job possibility.

The reality of this internship is setting in, and in reality I am kind of amazed I have made it this far. I have never done anything this adventurous. I have never moved away from home. I have never gone without a job, or a plan for paying for anything. I have never worked so hard to get something that was so far away and uncertain. The fact that I did all of this without thinking that it might be too hard, or thinking that I can't do it, or being too scared to take a chance, shows how much I want to do this. I just hope I can.

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