Thursday, September 29, 2011

nibbling on New York

ny-postcards

nyc-subway

nyc-fruit

nyc-bus

nyc-love

nyc-times-square

nyc-outside-kinokuniya

nyc-pens

nyc-kinokuniya

nyc-strand-bags

nyc-books

nyc-met

nyc-in-front-of-met

nyc-keep-park-clean

nyc-central-park

nyc-central-park-2

After a few solid days of intense exploration through cute little villages in North Jersey and the Lower Hudson Valley (more on that later) I was seized with an urge: I needed me some City. The hardcore kind. Dropped the house stuff for the day, hopped a train and before I knew it there I was. Spat directly into the throngs of traffic and action.

My memories of NYC were so fragmented that it was like tasting it for the first time. Whenever I had gone before, it was for work, and totally destination-oriented. I'd spend days at Javits but have no clue where I was. I'd go to conferences in hotels, play hooky from seminars and go hide in cafes around the corner. I loved it, had a great time, but didn't understand how the city was connected because I was being shuttled around in smelly cabs from point A to B.

This time I just walked. Took in the layout of the city as I wandered. Stuck to the streets, with the exception of two buildings: The Met, in which I got promptly lost, and Kinokuniya, the Japanese book/stationery/paper store in which I could have stayed forever.

I wondered whether I'd feel overwhelmed in the city after living in a small Midwestern town for five years, but I felt at ease. I loved how there was no tolerance for baby steps, that the city expected me to have my big girl shoes strapped on upon arrival and ready to go, how it pulled at the part of me that needs to feel anonymous. I was free to wander, free to look like a fool, free to blend in, free to get lost, free to observe, free to change direction - and no one gave a damn about any of it or me. It was delicious. Maybe best of all, I walked so much over this past weekend that I lost three pounds.

Obviously in 5 hours I didn't put even a dent into Manhattan, but it helped me get my bearings enough to have a starting point when I go back in November, hopefully on a photocrawl with dear Cindy, who (rather serendipitously) published a sweet welcome post to me just as I was setting foot in Central Park. As difficult as it is to wrap up our happy, easy life here in Kansas, my visit reminded me of all the great things that will soon be at our fingertips -- including an infinite supply of visual candy, welcoming friends and a built-in weight loss program. I really can't ask for more than that.

28 comments:

painted fish studio said...

man o man, you've captured why i love that city so much. i cannot wait to step out of that subway station in october. and cannot wait to see you there, maybe next spring?!

Maery Rose said...

My son recently moved to Brooklyn & I can't wait to visit! Your photos have increased the urge even more.

Cindy said...

it's your kind of town and has cleaned up very well over the years. it will be great to tour around with you and jen in the city i love, dearly!

no sleep till brooklyn as the beastie boys say. wait until you visit that borough. love your snaps!

jane said...

i hear ya! (from someone who lives in a small town... ;)) man! we missed each other by just a few days!!
xxx

M said...

Way cool! It is almost as exciting as Montreal, hum? LOL!! I'm glad to read you...

cath c said...

sigh, i do love nyc.

i spent many a youthful weekend that ended collapsed under the grand central clock, watching and listening to the tile cleaning zamboni, waiting for the first train out early monday morning....

bohemiannie! art said...

GReat pictures!

S.E.Minegar said...

welcome to the EC!! i'm over in NJ, just a short train ride from the city. isn't museum mile marvelous?

la ninja said...

oh, pet, you'll blend just in, you with your big girl shoes :)

Kelly Warren said...

Oh New York City, how I love thee. I'm so excited for you that you are going to be RIGHT THERE, just a quick train ride away. I wouldn't give up my Florida beaches and sunshine for anything, but if I could afford, I'd travel to NYC once a month. Great pictures!

suzanne cabrera said...

What a fun outing!!! Two of my favorites together! Lucky ducks!

Nicky Linzey said...

I knew it would be interesting to see New York through your eyes. Can't wait for more!

Rabbit Hole Report said...

Kindred spirit, you have captured exactly what it is I love about the city and more. So funny that you were at Kinokuniya because a friend of mine was just raving about it. I hope your house hunting was fruitful and that I join you on one of your photocrawls.

Chel said...

wow- homesick! Love this, though. I can't wait to see how you "do" the tri-state area :)

Mickey said...

I am a small town woman (Iowa) and my hubby is from the boonies on Long Island. I did not enjoy my trip into
the big city...we took the train and
we rushed up the stairs, which freaked me out, I could see down below between the railing and the wall. I hate heights, I was so freaked out at the top of the stairs,
I could hardly breathe!!! My hubby is not an explorer and that day neither was I. It didn't help that we were
short on money, so all we could do
was walk. Saw the empire state bldg
and a lot of souvenir stores. I was
anxious to get back to LI. I would
like to go back some time with someone who knows their way around!!

Andria said...

Great photos! I live down the road in Philadelphia, and have not visited Manhattan since before my kids were born (over four years ago). I love how you mention the city expecting you to have your big girl shoes already on...that is so true! You have to be ready to be swept up with the tempo of the crowds, or risk getting swept away altogether. Such an exhilarating place to visit.

rachel awes said...

what a FUN stroll!
& i am ga ga over
the art at your feet...
that bird..those singing words!
thanks for sharing the nibble.
LOVE to you in
big red letters
xox

819c87ac-ebe9-11e0-a4e9-000bcdca4d7a said...

Aimee-
I'm so excited for your move,and so sad to lose you here in the midwest. I love your blog and your work on it. Went to the Plaza Art Fair last week and didn't see a thing I liked, but am ready to commission some small things after you get settled in NJ (or NY.) Please keep in touch, and hug those girls and hubby for us

Debby

Shelly said...

Beautiful photos! I probably wouldn't have made it out of the paper store. Glad to know that you enjoyed it, New Big City Girl!

k.p. said...

Your photos and story telling could make even the most confirmed country girl wanna go live in the city! You are fabulous. In Kansas or N.Y. either place it's Artsyville all the way!

Marcie said...

Love your scenes from the city. Such a perfect rendition!!!

We Three 3 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
We Three 3 said...

I was so tempted to go today but thought it would rain. Thanks for this post, it took me there today! For me, saying I love NY is an understatement. We lived on W71st for 9 yrs and everyday was an adventure to me. I'm in the suburbs now but try to get in as much as possible. My son and I were just exploring Spring Street last weekend. Next stop, Canal.

Marcia (123 blog) said...

I love your little visit to NYC - it's on my to-do list and if I ever make it there while you're still around I would love to meet up with you (as do all your fans :)).

I can see that this nourished your soul!

Caity said...

AWESOME - such a big change but you sounds so ready to tackle it! I have Kinokuniya envy, swooon!

GRACIA AND LOUISE said...

Ah, New York. I long to see it with my own eyes. For now I will settle to explore New York through film, song, painting, blog posts and prose...

g xo

(My comment earlier seems to have been mysteriously gobbled. Above, a loose memory of what it was I typed.)

Bella Sinclair said...

WHAAAAAAAAATTTT???

Bella Sinclair said...

Okay, I'm reading the posts backwards here. Going back in time. You are in NY???? HOLY MOLY!

Ok, must read on......