Bye NewYork: Till we meet again
This past week, when I was not busy packing and still answering a 100 emails, I took a walk from Grand Central (42nd ) all the way down to Chinatown. It could have been a Counting Crows song. I enjoyed the walk as I was wrapped up tightly in scarves and a down jacket. It was a very New York series of moments. As I walked for 45 minutes I thought about what I would miss about New York. Of course, my short answer is that I will miss everything. However, we all know that is not true. I am not blinded by the New York City lights and can discern what are the bad parts to living here. That is not my focus these days, however. I am here to pay homageto my beautiful New York.
I will start off with a really personal matter. I will miss my doctor who has cared for me for over 8 years. He is considered a top doctor in New York in certain circles. To me he represents New York at its core. He is a young gay Asian doctor who doesn’t judge. He listens and if he needs to “chastise” me he does so softly and with humor. Of course, I have perfect blood pressure and such; thus his only chastisement is about how many gummy bears I eat in his office while waiting for him. Wherever I am, I can email him my symptoms and he works with me to get me needed medications, even if I am in the middle of deep Louisiana. Even when he has been on vacation, he has pulled over to the side of the road to phone in a prescription on my behalf. Yes, he is quintessential New York to me.
I will miss the best banana pudding in the world. There is a bakery called Buttercup Bakeshop; which always reminds me of the Princess Bride. I have to fight the urge to go and say “inconceivable”. If you are in New York, you must try this pudding. It is divine.
I will miss having access to Broadway and its discount same-day tickets. Let’s face it. There is no other “Broadway” in the United States. It’s unique and overly expensive. Thus, the ticket booths are just as unique and crazy like NY. A word of advice, get your tickets through the South Street booth instead of Times Square for there are way shorter lines there and you get to see another part of Manhattan. Of course, with all my business travel and a child, I really have not been to see a Broadway show in a long time.
I will miss being able to buy anything I need in the moment on any street corner. Say you are caught in a last-minute rain shower. Well, just a few feet up ahead there will surely be someone selling $5 umbrellas. Need a pair of socks to go with that umbrella? Check out the corner across the street. Of course, there is also the fact that any time of the day or night you can find an open store. Sometimes you just need to go out and get some mascara at 2am.
I will miss walking for miles on end and getting distracted by the shoe stores, pretty bars, fancy eateries and dives. Only London and Rome compare, in my eyes. Furthermore, the fact that you can walk everywhere and anywhere means you always have access to a free gym. Walking is one of the best exercises you can do and America could sure use more of it. The beauty of walking in New York is that when you get tired you can always just hop a bus or subway to get back.
I will miss the Caribbean eateries. I once went to a Puerto Rican restaurant in San Francisco and all it did was made me long for New York. There are Puerto Rican, Dominican and Cuban restaurants everywhere in New York. Where I can get my fill of mojitos, garlic and yellow rice. With that said, I will also miss being able to fly down to the Caribbean more easily. Although, my love affair with Puerto Rico has been filled with lots of ups and downs. I have to say, I will also miss the relatively short-flights to Europe and the sheer number of direct flights to many places in the world. As someone who loves to travel, but hates the actual act of flying, this is key.
In that vein, I will miss random road trips to any possible number of states. The east coast is filled with a lot of small states to which one can do a day tip. It is how I only have four states left before I can claim having been in all 50. The beauty is that you can drive, fly or take a train up and down the east coast rather easily. I long for the day of high-speed rail, though.
There is much more to be said of New York. At the end of the day, one’s love of New York is personal. For some, what they love is the ready access to countless bars and clubs. For others, it is access to Museum Mile where all forms of arts from the world can be found. You make New York your own for there is something for everyone.
I grew up in New York. I have left it before several times and have made my way back. It’s not really goodbye New York. It’s until we meet again.