Today marks the end of my 5th year in New York. We believe that this is the mark at which you become a real New Yorker, though I believe that being kicked by a homeless man and living with the mafia during my first year here should have designated me thus. But anyway, here's my list of integral lessons learned on the streets of New York....
(1) Sometimes public transportation can be relaxing. I've been known to take the bus sometimes rather than the train, because I can see outside and it gives me time to read.
(2) There are friendships that can survive anything--distance, time, and every kind of challenge--and come out better and stronger on the other side.
(3) A very large purse can in fact carry most of the things I used to keep in the trunk of my car. I currently have in my bag two books, a notebook, a can opener, wallet, phone, iPod, a multitude of hair accessories, and a pair of shoes.
(4) Moving to Queens is the greatest thing you can do for love.
(5) A kind and sane roommate is a necessity.
(6) No matter how many times I've been down there, and despite the fact that I worked there for three months, I will always get lost in the Financial District.
(7) Being alone does not have to equal being lonely. I have over the past five years learned how to navigate this city by myself, and how to be okay being on my own. Though there are times when it is a struggle, I know that I am not really alone, and that I have a wonderful group of friends here and all over the world, and that I can be proud of all I have done here.
(8) Though it will become commonplace to see celebrities, you will still have a running list in your head. My list includes Bebe Neuwirth, Cynthia Nixon, Brook Shields, Adam Duritz (my favorite), Pat Sajak, and the dad from the Wonder Years. I won't brag about the time I talked to an Oscar Nominee about grocery shopping. Or the time I got the phone number of one of the contestants from the first Apprentice (while working at The Container Store).
(9) Even though you may have been flattered the first time someone on the street made a comment about your hotness, it will get old real fast (but depending how creative they are, it can still be amusing sometimes).
(10) As said by my dear friend Nathan, God works in powerful ways. The life I have here is unlike anything I could've ever imagined for myself. At times, it is so much more difficult, but also so much more amazing.