Initially, when I thought of New York — I always thought of madness, a city that never slept, and just a good energy that was alive all the time. This was the thought all the way up to my 25th birthday; I had said that “I need to make it to New York” before I was 26. The late 20’s were kicking in, I was getting heavily disillusioned (or my hang-over was becoming residual not going away anytime soon) and I needed to be inspired.
Well after dealing with a hurricane named Irene, some other setbacks, everything didn’t go as planned. But I did make it there for the end of my 27th year. 28 was the first time I was in New York.
I was a little nervous about going to NYC by myself, but I ended up learning a lot about who I was and what I was really capable of. You don’t know about anything until you just throw yourself in a place you’ve never been before, with only you, and especially a place like New York. I thought at any rate, I was gonna get in a cab and the driver was gonna mug me and dump me in the Brooklyn Bridge. Or I was gonna get on a subway and get lost all the way to Harlem and ended up being in a sequel to “Precious,” the movie.
There were some things I wanted to do but ended up not doing because I was by myself. Loneliness kicked in and I wasn’t brave enough to go see “Evita” on Broadway like I had planned or jump on the Staten Island ferry and see the Statue of Liberty.
They always say “Paris is made for lovers.” I think some parts of New York are kept in that same regard.
The loneliness was apparent when I was walking home one night off of the subway and wanted to rehearse SaTC lines because I was drunk. I had no one to play Mr. Big, so it was a no-go.
However, New York was magical and inspiring. There was nothing like the experience of walking along and getting lost in the Financial District, cruising by St. Paul’s Church, and then ending up in a street festival for Columbus Day. There is nothing like that seeing the smile of an old friend greet you in the middle of the madness that is Times Square. There is nothing like a boozy brunch on the weekend, or tucking away into a cafe to have an intimate chat with a friend whose life choice took her to the other coast. There is no charm like walking along the streets and ending up in Greenwich Village in a tiny gritty bar to catch up with someone from college over beers. There is nothing like SoHo, all the inspiration, creativity, and more so the fashion (also watching the beautiful fashionable scruffy men look smoldering in a t-shirt)! There is nothing like Grand Central in all it’s glory, and it’s Serena van der Woodsen realness. There is nothing like starting off your morning with a live taping of the Wendy Williams Show! There is nothing like Chelsea, breathing with beautiful gorgeous older men, and having a martini while watching people walk by in the muggy weather. There is nothing like the energy of New York to make you meet a friend you’ve only known through photos! There is absolutely nothing like a meatball from New York (I died). There is absolutely nothing like the crunch of a New York pizza. There is nothing like the adventure of walking the city at night and just taking it all in and being silly singing Christina Aguilera in the middle of Washington Square.
There is nothing like New York.
New York, thank you for the inspiration. I’m sure I’ll be back.