Alex in Transit(ion)

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I will never forget what it was like coming back to Albany after living in Potsdam for four months. In such a big city, I thought that my absence wouldn’t be recognized and to my surprise, I was dead wrong. When I visited the shops and bars along Lark Street, the workers would give me a variation of “Alex, where have you been?” It was then when I realized that you don’t need to live in a small town of 300 people for your neighbors to care about you. It can be done in a city with a population of 97,856 as well. 

Albany has become my home and just like any home, there’s an innate desire to take care of it and make it better. Before I leave for grad school, I want to get more immersed in the community than I have before. My job has enabled me to meet a lot of great people with some solid ideas and I really want to make them come to fruition. For example, if things fall the way I’m working to make them to be, I really would like to organize a Bicycle Safety Awareness night for the youth because, as a cyclist, I can’t tell you how many times it breaks my heart to see kids riding the streets not only without helmets on, but often they ride against traffic and I feel that one of these days we will have a tragedy on our hands. Along with that, I’m thinking about organizing a fundraiser to help raise money to buy some helmets for youth that can’t afford them. Thankfully, my neighborhood association meeting is coming up after a three month long recess, so we will see! Finally, after talking with another woman about the recent sexual assaults in our neighborhood, I’m also thinking about organizing a SlutWalk. For those who are unfamiliar with the concept, the first SlutWalk began earlier this year when a Toronto police officer said that in order for women to protect themselves from sexual assault, they shouldn’t dress like sluts. Women protested against his remarks by marching; some dressed in regular clothes and others dressed in provocative clothing. Some of them carry signs with messages like this:

Since then, the movement has grown into an international phenomenon and has become one of the most successful feminist movements in recent years. I think it would be a great idea since we have a large number of colleges in the area and if we got the right organizations to support it, we could help make this a safer city. I can’t tell you how many times I have been harassed by men on the street and feared for my personal safety. This may not be a comprehensive solution but women need to let their voices be heard that we are not accepting of this behavior in our community.

This is what I love doing and even though organizing keeps me up nights and I work so hard, often for free, the end result is worth my time. 

Author: Alex

Hello! My name is Alex but you can call me Alexandra if you're feeling fancy. Here you'll find my adventures about exploring my new city of Hoboken, NJ, scurrying over the Hudson River to NYC, my bicycle excursions, and how I'm learning to embrace in medias res.

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