I spent this past weekend in New York visiting friends and getting a much needed feel for the city. For some reason, after getting rejected by NYU over four years ago, I held a grudge against the city itself.
New York is dirty, I thought.
New York has too many weird hipsters, I thought.
New York is so imposing, I thought.
I returned to the city several times during my college career, but every visit was a “family visit” and usually included stressful cab rides, Broadway shows, and being shoved by Japanese tourists in Times Square.
So, what a refreshing change to escape Hyde Park and do New York up right!
I was a nomad for the weekend, wandering from 58th and Madison down to 31st and 7th every afternoon to visit my friend N at the Affinia hotel where she was bunking for two months. Every night consisted of bar hopping in the East Village or bumping into fellow Uchicago alums at the 24 hour nail salon near 27th and Lex (after inhaling an Indian feast so authentic my Indian friend’s accent thickened from sheer bliss). But mostly. I walked. I walked and walked and ate and walked some more. We tried fabulous restaurants, sat in adorable cafes, and popped into cutesy vintage boutiques for some much needed wardrobe updating.
The best part of the weekend for me though, was the realization that even if I don’t end up in Chicago, I’ll be just fine. I’ve been clinging to what I know, rather than opening myself up to the idea that there are some pretty fabulous places where I could easily carve out a niche for myself. I know New York is the post-college dream, but I had always felt as if I wouldn’t fit in. As my cousin L told me: It’s really hard to not fit in, in NY.
Thank you N, C, L, S, and N for showing me your city and bringing a smile to my face. I’m lucky to have such amazing friends (and family!)
And…exciting news: while I was away, I received my very first job offer! I guess the saying’s true. Things come along when you least expect it.