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I survived my first day at a brand new job in a brand new company with brand new people. My new boss advised me to take a taxi in my first day but being the daring adventurer that I am (okay not really, I had plenty of time to spare and could afford to get lost) I decided to find and ride the metro to the office. The kind woman at the front desk of the apartment building pointed me in the right direction and I was on my way. It was a cold, cold morning and there was still a layer of snow and frozen slush on the ground so the walk was a little hairy. It was also quickly apparent that the path that had been cleared was for bicycles, not pedestrians. The walking path was still snowy and slippery, but better that than getting blindsided by a cyclist.

Amsterdam Metro Map

Once at the Ouderkerkerlaan station it only took three attempts to buy a day pass. I figured the machine, it spat out my card, and I was ready for a railbending adventure. Thanks to Google maps I knew that the train I should take would be headed toward Westwijk, however I neglected to write down the name of my stop. As I gazed out the windows at the little cars and foggy surroundings, I watched my building go by. Fortunately the stops were only a few minutes apart so I got off at the next and hopped on a train headed back toward my destination.

From there it the slippery adventure continued through the parking lot to find the front of the building. This place houses 1,000 people and a warehouse. It’s quite a change from the 35-person office I’m used to. After a few minutes, the human resources person I’d dealt with via email greeted me. He gave me a tour of the building and went through some company information and my paperwork. Then I was handed over to my counterpart who couldn’t have been more friendly and welcoming. Around noon the jetlag started to take effect and I couldn’t stop myself from yawning and wanting to find a dark, quiet place to curl up and nap.

I beat the mid-day sleepiness and made it through to 4:30pm. An early end to a European work day, but they knew I was exhausted. I also had to make my way to the closest shopping mall which closed at 6pm to pick up the things I couldn’t get last night at the super market. Being completely proficient with the metro system by now (not really) I took the train to the mall and quickly found a store selling exactly what I needed – a hair dryer and straightener. Necessities I tell you! Then it was back out in the cold and to the apartment. Tonight will be an early one as the taxi comes at 6:30 tomorrow morning to take me to Schiphol Airport where I’ll meet my counterpart and head to London for two days.

Overall the first day at work goes into the books as a good one. It was nice to meet a few people and get familiar with my surroundings. I’m looking forward to the next two days and really diving into this project and more of what my job will actually be.