I’ll be coming where dreams are made of

9 May
New York

New York

Just two weeks into my stay in Washington D.C., I went to New York for a few hours one day. Why? Because I could. Shortly after arriving, I found out that one can take the Bolt bus from D.C. to New York in 4 hours and for as low as $12-16 each way. I quickly made plans to see a friend who lives in Brooklyn, works at U.N. headquarters, and whom I hadn’t seen in 8 years. I was too bashful to ask her if I could spend the night at her house, knowing that the last thing she needed was to prepare lodging for a guest in addition to caring for her kids. I wanted a no-hassle trip. So I decided to make it a day trip.

The sun was out, the air was cool, and I walked the streets feeling carefree. The bus dropped us off in the Soho/West Village area, which I had always heard about and surely seen on the big screen. I had heard that there was a part of New York that didn’t feel hectic and crazy, with narrow, cobblestone streets and a less frenetic pace of life. I didn’t exactly feel like I was in the middle of Nebraska, but rather that I was walking streets that were bursting with all of the best of city life: conviviality, diversity, vibrancy. There seemed to be a buzz in the air, a crackling energy. Yes, in the evening the streets got crowded, but people were congenial, friendly. It wasn’t a scowling, unfriendly city; it was full of neighborly people of all walks of life. So I strolled the area for a few hours, stopping occasionally to get a slice of pizza, later a hot tea, browsing stores and churches, until the evening came. I had a wonderful time at a restaurant in Chinatown catching up with my friend and her kids, and then I caught the bus back to Washington. I was home before midnight.

I couldn’t help thinking, as the bus pushed through the darkness of Delaware and Maryland that night, if I had chosen the wrong East Coast city to live in. New York had grabbed a hold of me.

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