One day in New York, I got drunk on mimosas at brunch, danced on the bar in Coyote Ugly Saloon, then got a manicure at midnight while drinking a pint. The next, I got lost on the way to work and hassled by some creep in a dodgy neighborhood and almost cried because I was annoyed with myself for forgetting to put my NYC guard up. When I eventually got myself on the right train, my hangover kicked in and I almost fainted while listening to a guy rapping about a ketchup bottle next to me.
The highs and lows of life in NYC.
It’s running from one waitressing job near Grand Central to a hostessing shift Downtown at rush hour and not being allowed to do your shift because you were late. Shrugging and dropping into a friend’s bar for ‘one’ and accidentally sampling his entire new season’s cocktail list, plus eating a huge plate of wings. My love/hate relationship with wings in NY pretty much served as a metaphor for my feelings toward the city.
Having two $1oo days in a row at work when you live off your tips, then cashing in on a Friday and throwing dollar bills all over your basement in Queens when you get home – after a 90 minute journey on the M train.
It’s spending a day at a fashion museum walking among famous Valentinos, shopping at Macy’s then meeting a friend and drinking at a rooftop bar in Chelsea all night. A whirlwind day. The next, sleeping in, having to get a cab to work then leaving your phone in said cab… or so you thought. Mine was returned to me three days later by a regular at work who accidentally pocketed it on his way home.
The anonymity one experiences in a bustling metropolis can take you by surprise. Never before has the age old adage that you can feel loneliest when surrounded by people (or crammed into a subway carriage like sardines) rang more true for me than during my time in New York.
I spent my last night in the city at the launderette, and the next day I rose bright and early to spend my last few hours wisely. C and I skipped into a subway carriage to be met with a man’s bare bum as he peed onto the seat in front of him. Wincing, we swerved the bench we were about to plonk ourselves on and got on the next carriage.
Later that day, I surveyed Manhattan from the Top of the Rock. I guess the contrast between the two experiences – both startling but in very different ways, sums up the three months I spent in New York!
Excuse the double chin. I’d just spent three months eating wings and drinking beer.
Whether you love it or you hate it, Gotham is definitely a city of contrasts!
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