It's up to you


November 9, 12.52pm

As I sit on my rooftop terrace in the crisp, New York air, an early November sun showers the city with a layer of uncharacteristic warmth.

Pau Darco mixed with organic green tea is a new personal revolution.

With all the now, even more ridiculous, widespread reasons of possible failure in the past, paired with suburban living, close-minded characters and a general feel of settling ‘success’, I’ve discovered and come face to face with the world I knew was always waiting.

A world away from an often stagnant reality.

A new home away from home.

A cliché portrayal of the land of opportunity – this city instantly draws you in with that feel.

On arrival, bright lights, glowing streets and a flurry of activity, she never sleeps.

Each day surrounded by a new horizon, a new future, a new feeling of purpose.

Directors, producers, film stars even, line the streets.

But take away that superficial layer, and here you have a culture unlike any other.

Artists, musicians, poets have breathed in this addictive air, walked the line of history, and left their memories in the museums and archives of their time.

Yet hundreds of years on, somehow the feeling remains.

For, each and every day, a new character arrives on the shores, with a yearning heavy in their heart to leave an imprint on this ever-growing city, and in turn, the world.

Rich with opportunity, once again she opens her heart, and lends her precious time to the modern pioneers of the future.

Though always driven throughout university, I certainly did not feel the need to comply with the competitive displays and industry pressures that so many of my fellow journalists thrived upon.

Nor did landing a gig at The Sunday Times deter my desire for the niche.

And this, I feel, is the hidden secret of this ever-changing industry, fierce and cut-throat as it may seem.

We may not all fit the mould of ‘intro to’ TV, radio or print. Nor may we all be happy at the perceived highest career point in Western Australia in that field, or even Australia for that matter.

For my story, I have found my path in New York, ironically, away from the societal pressures of Perth that seem all very illegitimate with this new perspective.

Freelancing in this city will surround you with an eclectic mix of driven individuals.

Whether it is within the field of media, music or art, everyone seems to breathe passion and want to experience life in all its colours. Perhaps the ‘Big Apple’ seems like a world away and often becomes more of a fantasy than a perceived reality.

In that mind set, we are only limiting ourselves.

When you realise that you are in complete control of your reality, it’s as if Einstein dropped the apple over Newton causing Edison to flick the switch.

Find yourself, love all, and do whatever makes you happy. It’s grammatically, unethically, illogically, frankly – stupid not to.

Isabella Arena works as a reporter and has been living in New York since mid 2011. Her stories have been published and posted on Sky Net Media’s social site

Isabella graduated with a degree in Journalism from Curtin University in 2009. The above is a piece from her ongoing novel, written last year as she grew to love her adopted city.

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