One of my longtime readers — who happens to be a beautiful writer — sent this in, and I couldn’t resist posting it. I recall how excited I was to have lived one year in the city. Thinking back on how long I wanted to make it happen and that wow, I really did it, the one-year anniversary is a big deal to any NYC transplant, whether you’ve moved here from the tri-state, Texas or Tehran.
Dear New York City,
It wasn’t long ago that your mesmerizing lure removed me from my simple midwestern life into the belly of your beast. You welcomed me into your arms as a visitor three years ago and the first moment I saw your beautifully structured skyline I fell — hard. A young impressionable woman, there was nothing I could do to stop it. I had determined long before that you and I belonged together, but it was during my second year at a small college in metro Detroit that your gritty garbage-lined streets gracefully laid the path for my future.
After we parted ways for the first time, I couldn’t get you out of my mind. You became an obsession. I impatiently awaited our second meeting and the day that we would be united long term. And now here I am, exactly one year after we made our commitment to each other as happy as I was the day we first met. The past twelve months haven’t always been easy, my love.
As I caught my breath after climbing my stairway to heaven, I looked wide-eyed at the fifth floor walk-up studio apartment where our love affair would begin. Those first few days on the Upper East Side were blissful. Our honeymoon period took us to a transforming Central Park and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. I walked around the neighborhood with my roommate in awe of the fact that we had finally made it.
A few days later our journey took us to the crossroads of the world — Times Square. It was there that I arrived at my own crossroad, questioning the strength of my love. In my new work environment, I learned the naivety I had uptown didn’t fit into your midtown madness. Nothing could have prepared me for what I was to embark on as a Starbucks barista in one of your town’s busiest stores. After the initial culture shock, I quickly understood that tourists, God love them, are one of your biggest flaws. Often times, New York, your visiting friends cannot comprehend your complexity. However irritating that may be, they are yours and over time I have come to embrace your imperfections.
Our love flourished during autumn. When I wasn’t committed to the chaos of Times Square, I explored you inside and out taking long walks gazing at your towering buildings. Though you provided me with endless amounts of entertainment, I began to feeling lonely and neglected. The simplicity of our relationship was about to vanish.
I wasn’t here to only be with you. I had to commence my editorial career. As the bitter coldness blanketed the city at the turn of the year, I undertook an editorial internship at Time Out New York in addition to working at Starbucks. It is my understanding New York, that you never sleep and it was around this time I learned the reasons why. Your business is never done and neither was mine. We lost touch during those five months but I couldn’t have made it without you.
The renewal of our affection blossomed as spring sprung. We spent afternoons underneath cherry blossoms on the Great Lawn in Central Park, explored the beauty of Wave Hill’s serene gardens and strolled high above the streets at the High Line. Soon thereafter I fell into a deep period of personal discovery. As the summer heat wave began, we entered a bit of a wild phase. There were moments I felt I couldn’t keep up with you — you sure know how to party — but I felt lucky knowing you would still be mine.
I know you’ve had commitment problems in the past. Some people simply can’t make it with you after a year, and I honestly don’t know what the future holds, New York, but I’m looking forward to it. As we begin our second year together please know how grateful I am to have you in my life. Your inspiration is endless and I cannot wait to explore what else this relationship has in store for us.