NEW YORK IS BECOMING MY HAPPY PLACE AGAIN
When I was growing up, New York was a fairy tale. Central Park was a street away from my home. My family frequented there and a lot of my memories are in that park. My newer ones are there too. Central Park in autumn is exactly like the movies. My family would go trick or treating together and come home with bags of candy. Mom wouldn't let us eat it all, but we still snuck as much candy as we could. I would walk across the yard to my grandma's house for Thanksgiving. In fact, my grandma was the school's crossing guard and the school's chef. Everyone knows Mrs. G. People always go up to her and ask her to save a plate of food for them because the neighborhood knows just how delicious grandma's cooking is. Then there is fifth avenue during the holidays. Christmas was the best. Rockefeller Center and the lighting of the tree. Every year Tony Bennett sang his most famous Christmas songs and I watched in awe. My mom would always buy me the perfect present. It was never expensive, but she knew that I wasn't into the expensive. I pretty much wanted books and CDs. She surprised me with John Mayer's Battle Studies album one year and I tackled her under the tree. Cheers, ma!
I have so many wonderful memories. There were also sleepovers with my cousin who is more like a brother to me. There's also our family road trips to the south. My birthday's were always the best. There would be a block party every year and the neighborhood kids were invited to come to my birthday which was always held up the lane.
As a native of New York, I've forgotten how magical it is to live here. It's strange. I see tourists staring up in awe like it's a dream come true to be here. I once felt that way about this city. I lost it somewhere along the lines. New York became a boring routine. School made me restless and the fire that represents the passion of New York felt like it was slowly burning out. I felt as if I couldn't do anything to stop it. It felt like the lights in Times Square dimmed until they were out completely and the only magic that existed was during the holiday season. The spontaneity that is New York was gone. Poof! It vanished into thin air. I had decided that I no longer wanted to live in a city that I had mapped out in my mind.
I didn't like how I felt about a place that I once thought was an urban fairy tale. I needed to do something about that. That's when I came up with the idea of taking myself on dates. In recent times, I visited the museum. The Metropolitan Museum of Art is my favorite. I love being there. I learn a lot when I go there. Sometimes I like to visit my favorite Monet's. I got to see the Met's newest exhibits. There's the Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination exhibit which was the theme of the Met Gala. There's also the Visitors to Versailles exhibit and the Pinxit Mexici. I've had lunch at Serafina again which is one of my favorite Italian restaurants. I always seem to end up with a hot waiter. Cheers to that too!
I've been trying to reignite the flames. I found that the best way to start is going to the root of it all. I've gone to the places I fell in love with as a child. I'm doing the things I love. Like finding new places to take photos, finding new bookshops, and finding new coffee shops. I'm only at the early stages of feeling the way I once felt about New York. The sparks are igniting. I'm feeding that spark until the flames are burning high and I'm having fun doing so. New York is making me happy again. It's my happy place and maybe it always will be.
Have you ever felt this way about your hometown? If so, how did you deal with it?