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I live in New Jersey and have an occasional commute to New York by train – I go there in the morning and go back in the evening. New York reminds me of my mission in the States. Right now, I’m on my way to New York to stay over so that I see more and feel better. I need a couch.

Before my moving to the States, I asked my friends from an English-speaking club to write some reviews for me on couch; however, three reviews like “his English very good” weren’t all too impressive to find a host. Suddenly, as if according to the canons of Batman comics, a guy named Robin came to help. Robin migrated to New York from the Philippines a few years ago. He lived in a sort of communal apartment and worked as a physiatrist.

10 p.m., Brooklyn, Utica Street subway station. I feel weird as it’s bloody dark around here. People say it’s dangerous out there at night. It turns out, it’s easier to love Brooklyn from afar – when you see it through 90s hip-hop songs. Reality is different.

Robin meets me at the entrance with friendliness, uncommon for a stranger. He notices my skinny body, worn out by overtime hours. We go to a store and get some food, so there’s something to stuff me up. We sleep in a single bed – nothing new for someone who spent the whole summer in one king-size bed with a guy called Bogdan.

Robin left to work earlier than I woke up. During breakfast, I got to meet Robin’s roommates: Maxi from France, Karim from Tunis and Ahmed from Syria. Maxi came to New York for a month to learn cooking local thick crust pizza. Karim and Ahmed worked in a Middle Eastern restaurant.

– [Me]: Ahmed, I believe you have a war in Syria, how do you feel about it?
– [Ahmed, smiling]: I don’t watch TV.

Robin ended up leaving me no review on Couch. I think I must have offended him somehow.

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