Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Taking a Bite Out of the Big Apple

Looking up at the Chrysler Building
A couple of years ago, a friend from work came back laden with gifts after a visit to New York City.  I received a mug emblazoned with the bold proclamation “I [heart] NY” to add to my already sizeable – and much loved – mug collection.  But whenever I used that particular mug, I didn’t feel legit.  Certainly not as legit as I felt when I sipped from my #1 Sister mug.  ‘Cause, while it’s a well-established fact that I am indeed a #1 Sister, I never exactly [hearted] NY.   

I’m not exactly a fan of “the city”.  And by “the city,” I don’t mean a specific city; I mean cities that are really big and noisy and filled with really tall buildings.  I prefer my cities to be slightly smaller.  Or suburban.    
Last week, I spent three and a half days in New York City.  This was really my first time spending a significant amount of time in the heart of the Big Apple.  To be honest, I wasn’t exactly looking forward to it.  It’s just so big and noisy and crowded and there are all those really tall buildings.  I was filled with anxious trepidation.  And an overwhelming fear of getting swept away and lost.  Luckily, I was going with two friends, one of whom really, really [hearts] New York City.  And who knows how to cross the street like a true city girl. 
On my trip, I learned that New York City is many things.
It is extremes and in betweens.
It is hustle and bustle and moments of serene solitude. 
It is skyscrapers and shrines.
It is food carts and ice cream trucks and the Russian Tea Room.
It is bright lights and dark alleys. 
It is Upper and Lower.  East Side and West Side.  Downtown.  Midtown.  Uptown.
It is the city that never sleeps.  Except for that guy on the church steps. 
It is past, and present, and future.  All in one city block. 
It is the citiest of cities.
And I survived it.  With a little help from my friends. 
I [heart] NY might still be too strong of a sentiment for me; however, I can honestly now say that I [fondly appreciate] NY.
I wonder if that’ll fit on a mug.    

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