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Another New York City-versary!

Another New York City-versary!

It’s been two years since I showed up at Penn Station with a giant suitcase, a dwindling bank account and plenty of big dreams for the big city. I got onto a bus, collected quarters from strangers to pay the fare and then realized I was on a downtown bus when I needed to be going uptown. I sat down next to an old lady, told her I was giving myself a month to find an apartment and a job, and she looked at me, shook her head and said in thick New York accent: “Oh, honey, you’re never going to make it. Come back again and give it a real try.”

#Whatliftsyou mural in SoHo, New York City

I never dreamed I’d still be here two years later–but alas, here I sit in my Brooklyn apartment. I have a boyfriend and a “real job” and a book club, so many incredible friends and (some) money in the bank and a punch card at my coffee shop. I have a regular dry cleaner, nail salon, bagel shop–I’ve got the fixed life I envied, become the local I admired. I fell in love with this city and this life the way most love goes: slowly at first, and then all at once, the sort of love that you can’t quite imagine ever really ending.

Down the street from me, there’s a wine shop that does tastings on Wednesday nights: you can pop in and try three sparkling ciders, sauvignon blancs or Argentinian malbecs while snacking on crackers and brie. There’s a cute little provisions store that sells fancy cheese by the slice and baguettes and organic Brooklyn-made chocolate bars, and there’s a big Puerto Rican grocery store with fluorescent lights and local cotija cheese and homemade salsa. On Saturday mornings, we pick up bagels and iced coffee and eat them on a park bench. On Sunday nights, we order in sushi or pick up sandwiches from the bodega and watch HBO.

There are mornings when the subway is so incredibly crowded, when the cars are stuffed to the brim with people from all walks of life: the magazine editors with perfect coifs and high heels and stockbrokers in pressed suits, busboys and dishwashers, tourists and immigrants and lifelong New Yorkers. Most people are tuned into their own little worlds, headphones plugged in and iPads out and newspapers tucked under the arm. One of my favorite guilty pleasures is peeking over shoulders and being able to guess what book they’re reading from just one page; other times, I’m wrapped up in whatever book is on my Kindle and I’m just so thankful for 20 minutes of uninterrupted reading time.

Sometimes instead of transferring, I get off the subway at 14th Street and walk to my office through the cobblestone streets and brownstones of West Village. Other mornings, I ride my bike across the Williamsburg Bridge: no matter how quotidian it is, there’s always a bit of magic when you see the Manhattan skyline with the sunshine glinting off the skyscrapers. There’s a sense of freedom and adventure riding a bike in New York City: you absolutely have to be in the moment, fully present to the cars and the people and the streets.

It’s still thrilling to think about what my “normal” activities are: picnics in Central Park, drinks at West Village speakeasies, rooftop yoga in Brooklyn, outdoor movies in Bryant Park, eating sandwiches under the arch at Washington Square, shopping in SoHo. These are the things tourist dreams are made of, and it’s just everyday life here.

Last year, I daydreamed about “getting a dog, about an apartment in Brooklyn with a dishwasher, about long weekends in the Caribbean or jaunts upstate.” I haven’t made the jump on buying a dog yet (soon!), but I just resigned my lease on an adorable apartment that is, yes, located in Brooklyn and has a dishwasher AND HAS AN IN-UNIT WASHER-DRYER. We spent a long weekend in the Dominican Republic, plenty of jaunts upstate to the Berkshires. So basically, dreams do come true.Β And I can’t wait for (at least) another year of living the dream in New York City.

2013: Reflecting on a year of living in New York City

2012: The risk of wanting to make it in New York CityΒ // Notes from the universe: what’s next

Tips, tricks and resources for living in and visiting New York CityΒ 

 

  • Caroline Eubanks

    You should have told that lady “Just watch me.” Way to go girl!

  • This is so well-written! It describes NYC life exactly how I picture it. πŸ™‚ I am really looking forward to my trip up there early December! My husband and I are planning to go to some restaurants/locations that you have mentioned on your blog while we are there. While I wish we could make it up there this summer (because summer in NYC looks fantastic), I’m looking forward to being there when all the Christmas decorations are up!

  • 2blondie

    So happy for you and the journey you’ve been on!! Love reflection posts. πŸ™‚

    allienotsally.blogspot.com

  • Your apartment sounds like a unicorn. Congrats on two years! My third is fast approaching…

  • Needed this today! Feeling nervous about our Seattle move but really excited to satiate that fixed-life envy you speak of.

  • Simone Anne

    I love this! Happy NYC anniversary. You sound so happy & content & excited about everything. Plus, that apartment sounds fab! πŸ™‚ xo

  • Melissa Trinidad

    Never give up a NYC apartment with a washer and dryer. That’s like finding a unicorn.

  • Leah Travels

    Congratulations on this lovely piece of writing and your NYC-versary.

  • Christine, this is truly inspirational. I loved reading your reflections on living in NYC. Thank you for sharing a beautiful story of what happens when you leap for your dreams. Happy NYC Anniversary!! πŸ™‚

    xo
    Valerie
    pinsonthemap.com

  • You are living the dream, lady. And how awesome that it’s still your dream. πŸ™‚

  • Bryony Cole

    Yay! Love this πŸ™‚

  • Dana

    Congrats Christine! Can’t wait to keep reading your upcoming adventures!

  • Better Half Weddings & Events,

    Love this, Christine! So nice to see you doing so wonderfully!

  • lindsaypunk

    I love this post, probably for all the wrong reasons. Seeing someone still loving and thriving in NYC is a sobering reminder that I need to get back to feeling that way about something, some place. Not even my cheap unicorn-like Brooklyn apartment can salvage my fading relationship with this city. Now I just need to be brave, pull a Christine, and make some MOVES! πŸ˜‰ PS – Can’t wait to see what kind of dog you get!

  • Ah, my heart sings for you! Congratulations on two very happy and successful years in New York. Wishing you the best for those to come.

  • I loved reading this, Christine! MAJOR high-five!

  • camorose

    Right?! She was such a bit of backhanded motivation for me πŸ™‚

  • camorose

    Yes! NYC is magical during the holidays, you’ll have such a wonderful time.

  • camorose

    Thanks lady! So glad you enjoyed it!

  • camorose

    Haha! I know–it will be tough to ever leave this spot!

  • camorose

    Yes! It’s a definite joy to be a “local” somewhere–and the best part is that you are still free to travel, just with a bed to come home to!

  • camorose

    Aww thanks Simone! Certainly enjoying life on the East Coast πŸ™‚ xo

  • camorose

    Haha–noted!

  • camorose

    Thanks, Leah! When are you going to come visit?

  • camorose

    Thanks Valerie! Glad you enjoyed it πŸ™‚

  • camorose

    Yes! It’s nice being able to balance life in a city with plenty of travels πŸ™‚

  • camorose

    Hope you’re still loving life in NYC too! We have to catch up soon for a coffee xx

  • camorose

    Thanks so much for all of your support, Dana!

  • camorose

    Thanks Shelley! πŸ™‚

  • camorose

    Boom! Can’t wait to see your next move!

  • camorose

    Thanks lady! Can’t wait to see you next time you’re in the city!

  • camorose

    Thanks lady! Can’t wait to catch up soon!

  • I’ve been away for awhile.. always good to catch up on your posts. You’ve got a way with words, really paints the picture. This New York life sounds awesome – congrats!

  • Life sounds pretty fab. Good on you! Love the pic by the way πŸ™‚
    Claire xx

  • Briel79

    Congrats on 2 years in NY! From all that I’d read on your blog before you moved there I had no doubt you’d make it but I know that’s easy for me to say from where I sit on my couch. πŸ™‚ Wishing you all the best for the next year and more!

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  • Erin

    Congratulations! I remember how excited I was when I read your post announcing your migration to the East Coast. This is so well written and inspiring. I’m so happy your life is unfolding in your favor. Oh how I, too, would love to commit to a dog! xoxo Erin

  • camorose

    Thanks lady! It’s good, but the tacos don’t even come close to the West Coast πŸ˜‰

  • camorose

    Thanks! Definitely not bad πŸ™‚

  • camorose

    Thanks lady! Have appreciated all of your support over the last few years πŸ™‚

  • camorose

    Thanks! Fingers crossed the dog is coming soon πŸ™‚

  • Cathy Colbert

    Love the post and the posts about having confidence. Keep going and live the life you want to live. and having an in unit washer dryer is the best.

  • camorose

    Thank you! And yes–SO grateful for that washer/dryer!

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  • thesatorisaga

    This means, you have a full-time job and at the same time you are blogging too? πŸ™‚ Would love to feel inspired πŸ˜€

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  • camorose

    Yes! I work full-time at Vimeo and I also blog πŸ™‚

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