|My first apartment in New York. 2nd floor, left building, those were our windows! via|
I remember that first summer in New York like it was yesterday. My first night, I went out with my roommate and her friends. She worked in an art gallery and was friends with people who had more money than I could ever imagine. We went to a bar where they bought bottles (and bottles) of wine and packs of cigarettes came to the table on little trays (this was before the smoking ban!). I remember thinking that wasn't the New York I knew and moved for.
The New York I moved for was the gritty, tough, exciting, up all night, live on almost no money, but live-like-you've-never-lived-before New York. The New York where you stood in line for an hour to get into Copacabana to see Angie Martinez announce the latest Latino act to perform. The New York where you had to knock on the window of the bodega past a certain hour and tell them what you wanted for a snack (or if they liked you, they would unlock the door and let you come find your snack on your own). That was the New York I moved for.
My bedroom only fit my bed, a desk, and a bookshelf. I had a dresser in the bathroom and clothes under my bed. I spent one full paycheck per month on rent. But I had a space where my friends could come over and hang out. A space where my friend Eric would ring the bell and have lunch with me when he worked in my neighborhood.
My friends and I stayed out all night, dancing and laughing and having crazy adventures. I even remember one night/morning when I was coming home and the paper boy was dropping newspapers off on doorsteps in my building.
Those were the nights of my New York Story.