I didn’t realize it until I turned the calendar away from New York this weekend that I had become attached. You see, this time of year always make me dream of New York City. RF and I spent five *long* years living in Brooklyn and I wasn’t the slightest bit hesitant about leaving. It’s funny, really, because I spent so many years longing to live there. Talk about your be careful what you wish for lessons. Don’t get me wrong, I really do love New York. Heart it with a heated passion, in fact, which is exactly the problem. NYC is my bad boy. That guy I lust after with a flaming intensity that blisters me with overexposure.
Visiting is a joyous affair – a bacchanalia that’s easy to keep pace with for a few days, a couple of weeks, maybe even a month or two under the right circumstances. But the moment I had no option for retreat, the hangover began to set in and hard.
We arrived in August and I immediately realized that our time on the West Coast had softened me to the pernicious effects of temperature and humidity rising in tandem. I, quite literally, could not take the heat! (Don’t even get me started on the kitchen.) I quickly learned that pounding the pavement wasn’t a quaint idiom. For the first time in my life I wore through the soles of my shoes. My feet ached, always. My heart ached, a lot, for friends “back home” and water views and easy living. I was convinced that I would never find a job, or hit my stride, or in any way whatsoever fit in. Then came the fall.
No, not the physical kind of fall. Autumn. Just the opposite of falling, actually; my outlook began to pick up. In fact, as the mercury dropped, attitudes shifted all around me. It was clear that everyone had been steeping in misery together. Leaves blushed and faces softened. Neighbors ambled down sidewalks and lingered on stoops, relishing the seasonal shift. Still New Yorkers, but slower and much more cordial.
I was in love, once again. But true love this time, warm and comforting. Lazy love that sleeps in on weekends, has cocktails with brunch, and wanders arm in arm through the park stopping periodically to gaze into each others eyes, just because. Snuggly love with afternoons that are warm enough to leave your jacket on a bench while you hop on a swing just to feel the sunshine on your cheekbones as you blow through the crisp wind, and evenings that are cool enough to bundle into with a hot apple cider. Kind love. Perfect love. Cruel love. For winter’s epic lover’s quarrel is lurking around the corner. Thankfully, love is blind and can’t see what’s brewing. When it comes to New York at this time of year, I can only see the fling.