I spent the last couple of days in the best city in the U.S., the best place in the world - New York City! I only had about 48 hours to spend in the city so I had to choose wisely what I wanted to do. I started my morning when I landed with breakfast at my favorite coffeeshop in Harlem, Manhattanville. I've spent so much time here in the past that it was almost like a second home to me.
As many of y'all may not know, I used to live in New York City for several years and later decided to relocate to Seattle. Living in a big city with dogs was never a problem, New York has tons of parks to visit, I'll write another post about the life with dogs in New York City in a couple of weeks!
The Three Musketeers in Central Park, March 2016
New York City is magical during Christmas time. There're so much Christmas decorations and Christmas trees that definitely makes one come into a Christmas spirit. Many restaurants in Harlem have their own Christmas trees outside and it makes it cozy to walk around there.
There's something about New York City that makes my heart beat faster. The diversity and different cultures all living in this city with a different purpose in life. As soon as I placed one foot outside the airplane at JFK I felt a sense of happiness going through my body. The same feeling I felt every day living in this amazing city. I saw all the NYC T-shirts, decorations, the airport signs, and the voice in the speakers calling for passengers - it felt like I was home again. Buying a metro card again, using the machines and typing in my zip code, and holding this yellow card in my hand made my heart skip one beat. Hearing two people arguing and scream f*%€#k you to each other, I smiled because that is a typical day in New York City. Swiping my metro card, taking the stairs down to the subway and hearing the voice of the New York City Subway system saying: "Stand Clear of the Closing Doors Please," seeing people in the morning heading for their mission of the day, to follow their dreams, to visit their favorite place in the city, buying their morning coffee, going to work and spending way too many hours at work basically because of the non-existing "life and work" balance, or to see their loved ones. Getting off the train, walking up the stairs, helping a mother with her baby in a stroller, and seeing the fire escapes on each building as soon as I stepped outside. Crispy air and with a little bit of snow on the ground, walking down the street seeing the Starbucks we visited every Saturday morning at 10:00 am walking with my dogs and the dog stroller. Passing the dog park that we spent every weekend to socialize the dogs. Hearing the sound of the fire trucks while cars wouldn't move to the side to let them pass, seeing the blue sky with the morning sun, and wishing I brought my gloves because it was freezing cold outside. Entering my favorite coffeeshop and hearing the sound of the coffee machine, ordering a croissant, and hearing the crispy sound taking my first bite. Stepping outside again, walking down Lenox Avenue to 125th Street seeing black men wearing sunglasses and fur coats, how I have missed that...(even though I am totally against fur!). Seeing black men with pit bulls walking down the streets with big gold chains, women all dressed up carrying a shopping cart heading to their grocery store. Watching people selling fruit on the side walks, passing another park someone sitting on a bench reading a book in the freezing weather. Continuing down the street seeing the shitty liquor store I spent way too much money at buying red wine and being called blondie each and every time I was there. Seeing the grocery store that smelled raw meat as soon as you entered, and the other grocery store that was way too expensive for my budget, but they had the best selection of cheeses. Passing all my favorite restaurant preparing for lunch opening, the dry cleaner who always delivered my clothes to my home. Looking around remembering my dog greeting all the other dogs because New York City has more than 600,000 dogs.
Checking in at the hotel hurrying to go outside to "feel" and "breathe" the city. Walking around Time Square that I never really appreciated before, New Yorkers avoid TS at all costs. Being away from all of it, it's hard not liking it. Taking the crosstown buss to Midtown East and walking down the streets entering downtown. Drinking a hot chocolate with whipped cream following with a glass of red wine, and lunch at Union Square. Visiting my favorite wine bar Briciola in Midtown West in the evening the same wine bar we visited the last evening in the city before moving to Seattle the next morning.
Empire State Building welcomed me back with my favorite color green
Waking up the next morning grabbing freshly brewed coffee at a café watching people heading to work wearing thick winter coats and carrying laptop bags. Knowing that I am in the best city in the U.S., the best place in the world and I am responsible for making my dreams come true in this city. If you can make it in New York City, you can make it anywhere.
We left New York more than a year ago, and it still felt like nothing has changed. It's so easy to fall back where you left it and fit right in. I didn't expect to feel this way and to miss being a NewYorker.
"Once you've lived in New York and made it your home, no other place is good enough." - John Steinbeck