Have orange rucksack, will travel

Hello! My name is Phil, and I’m a brand-new intern here at MintTwist from the United States. I’ve only been in England for a few weeks now, and this is my first time ever in the UK. I’m sure most people who have travelled across the ocean will agree that the first time visiting foreign lands can be quite daunting. Imagine how I felt working in an office just six days after my first steps on English soil!

I come from a town of about 100,000 in the states called Rochester, Minnesota – home of the world-famous Mayo Clinic (giving Rochester the nickname “Med City”) – and though I may be a small-town native, I was born with a big city heart. Knowing this, I assumed I would immediately fall in love with London, and I was right! That’s not to say that there hasn’t been a bit of a learning curve for me – both in the city and at MintTwist. This blog post will tell the tale of my early adventures travelling to London, and explore my ambitions and hopes for what will likely be a summer that comes and goes in the blink of an eye.

Welcome to Kentish Town

One thing you must know is that I’m absolutely obsessed with music of all genres, and I was excited from the get-go to explore the music scene of London and the rich history of music in this country. Conveniently, my all-time favourite group is an English band called the Beatles.

Early in my stay, I went on a brief tour of London with my flatmates led by a friendly man name John, and I asked him where I need to go to see a concert while I’m over here. He told me the O2 Forum. A couple days later, I took the tube to Kentish Town to explore the neighbourhood and make sure I knew the location of MintTwist and the Highgate Studios so I wouldn’t be late on my first day. Little did I know, the Forum is practically next door. Fine by me!

Kentish Town is a wonderful neighbourhood, dotted with colourful stone buildings, a variety of shops, cafes, and pubs and even a McDonalds for when I’m feeling especially patriotic. I’ve merely scratched the surface of what this part of London offers me, and I can’t wait to go get lost and discover more. I love my home, but I can safely say that Kentish Town is one of the coolest places I’ve ever seen and I’m sure I’ll spend some off-days here, too.

From Missouri to MintTwist

After this summer, I will begin my final year studying digital advertising and marketing at the University of Missouri School of Journalism. We at the Mizzou J-School are proud of our reputation as one of the finest journalism institutions in America, and I’m excited to apply my current knowledge of digital marketing while broadening my skill set during my time at MintTwist through channels such as SEO and PPC. I could tell after scanning MintTwist’s website that they’re a brilliant company with many awesome clients, and I felt their bold, boundary-pushing attitude matched mine. Needless to say, I was very excited when I found out they were taking me on.

As much as I hate to admit it, I was rather nervous on my first day at MintTwist. I just had no idea what to expect. Luckily, the marketing team welcomed me in and helped me get comfortable in the office right away. I feel obligated to give a shout-out to my neighbour in the office, Ben, who by some miracle eased the burden of homesickness by introducing me to a musician also a native of Minnesota (an hour from my hometown) even though Ben is from New Zealand and didn’t know where in the states Minnesota was. I returned the favour by giving him a quick geography lesson of America via Google Maps. At the end of the day, the MintTwist team said hello by sending me gifs, which I think we will all agree is the proper form of interpersonal digital communication.

MintTwist’s office at Highgate Studios is going to be a great place to work. On one side of the office, the wall is decorated with a string of football jerseys, so I know I have people to talk sports with here, and hopefully I’ll be coming home with a Premiere League team to give my support heading into next season. On the other wall are a variety of posters referencing some American television, Nintendo video games and Legos. I think I’ll be alright here.

Mind the Gap

I made a few assumptions about England before leaving and most of them have proven to be false. First, I expected to walk around being looked down upon, being a dirty American in England. Surprisingly, the locals here ask me a ton of questions about home – about politics, sports, the language – and I’m happy to answer any of them.

While we’re on the subject, I wanted to come to London to dodge any language barriers, but it’s still there. A word to the folks back home: it’s lift, not elevator, queue, not line, and, especially important, trousers, not pants (please don’t call them pants here… I learned the hard way).

Finally, there’s the tube, which can be a real beast if you aren’t prepared. I’ve had to change my route to work twice already because of train delays and repairs, but I suppose muttering colourful language under my breath about the public transportation makes me seem more of a local than I am. I also imagine I’ll be hearing “Mind the gap between the train and the platform” in my nightmares, but I digress.

Anyway, that’s pretty much the story of my summer so far. It’s going to be a wild ride from here until the first week of August, but I’m ready to get stuck in and help MintTwist any way I can – and maybe learn a thing or two along the way myself. Cheers!