This weekend, I went to New York City. This was far from the first time I’ve been there, but this time, I fell in love. I don’t know what was different about it, but for some reason, the city affected me in a way it never has before. I have always wanted to love NYC – it’s a place that’s full of dreams and aspirations (at least according to every movie I’ve ever seen), but I never felt any of that. I always saw it on TV and in movies as this romantic magical land where anything was possible and even the normality of everyday life was entertaining and fun (Friends and How I Met Your Mother were very convincing in this way), but then when I got there, it felt fast and crazy and big and confusing and scary. Logically, I thought it would be a cool place to live after college, but when I actually visited, there was no way in hell I could ever imagine myself living there. But not this time. This time I saw New York in a different light; I definitely found some rose-colored glasses and wore them with pride. Maybe it was the perfect weather, the good company I was in, the girl at H&M who somehow pulled off black lipstick, or the timing of a well-needed escape from school, but I finally saw New York as all that I’ve ever wanted to see it for.
One of the things I’ve liked about New York ever since I was little is that it is a cultural hub. It’s diverse in its population in every way possible – from race to age to style sense to nationality, New York has everything. Whenever someone sees something out of the norm, whether it’s amazing or weird, the go-to phrase is always, “only in ___________.” I hear that on the daily at school (recently, it was about the ducks going into our local CVS), and I probably say it on the daily at home (usually something about someone wearing socks, birkenstocks, a floral hemp skirt, and a flannel from Goodwill, standing on the corner in the rain trying to sell tie-dyed toilet paper to passersby…), but what I realized is that we really have no grounds to say that. Because every time we say “only in __________,” it’s just not true. Anything you can think of that is “unique” to a place ALSO happens in New York City. Which is amazing to think about. New York has just about every type of person out there – from homeless people to celebrities, hippies to yuppies, hipsters to pimps – New York’s got it all. It’s truly THE city.