The Good Old Days

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

It has recently come to my attention that I was living a fantasy life in New York.  The only problem is that it was just my normal life, so now everything else just seems so ordinary and difficult and unexciting.  I just went to work and school.  Bought groceries and shared countless meals with the best friends a girl could ever ask for.  Went to weekend movies and practically froze to death in cold winters that never seemed to end.  Missed family events and spent too much money on plane tickets.

But I lived for two years in the greatest city in the world... without paying a penny of rent (or any other living-type bills).  I was completely broke all the time, but I still went to more Broadway shows than movies.  I spent sleepless nights in a Harlem hospital, but there were also a few legendary nights spent in far more exciting places.  For all the complaining and buying more pairs of fleece-lined leggings, I will forever daydream about the February when it snowed every single day.  And regardless of what anyone says, it kind of actually is just like Friends, with people who become your family somewhere along the way.  The ones who complain right along with you and drop everything after great dates and breakups and just always seem to be around.

So as I sit in my Kansas condo watching coverage of a hurricane that destroyed that adopted home of mine a year ago tonight, I can't help but think how odd it is.  Make no mistake.  It is impossibly hard to live in New York City.  You're stranded twenty blocks from a subway with no chance of catching a cab in the rain.  Exhausted from carrying groceries and Christmas presents all over the city, since leaving them in your car isn't really an option.  It's lonely and cold and so busy you can't even think straight.  And, of course, there's the whole disaster-prone, terrorist-targeted, constant-fear existence on a 24/7 basis.  But somehow it just seemed so easy, to have everything you could ever need in a five-block radius, a doorman to sign for your packages, a cab to the airport, and eight friends to have dinner with on any given night.  Lots of things are easier in Kansas.  Few things compare to loving my job and seeing my family almost every weekend.  Also, I don't have half a million dollars to buy a one-bedroom apartment.  I'm just so used to this whole other life now.

Because it can't be the greatest city in the world without the struggle to make it home.

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