New York City. Those three words together are almost certain to evoke a reaction whenever they’re used. Clearly more than just a mark on a map, New York has a persona of its own, and in the realm of cities, New York is an A-list celebrity that everyone recognizes and wants a part of. The fame of this city makes it seem completely familiar, but with an edge and enough mystery to keep us intrigued.
I’m here with 3 other girlfriends, and I am soooo happy to have their company on this trip! Always happy to see them, but especially now after travelling alone for the past 6+ weeks!! Having their excitement and seeing their view of NY along with the way they’ve relayed that to their own friends back home has been fascinating for me. It’s fun to have another perspective – a reminder of what it’s like to experience the hum of the Big Apple for the first time.
For me, it’s the rush I feel just as I step outside the theatre after watching a great Broadway show that keeps me coming back. Having so many sounds and sensations saturating my nervous system is the best intoxication for me, and I’m floating on that energy for the rest of the night. The skill of the performers; the set, costumes and lights and music; then to walk outside into the crowds – sirens and horns and bike bells and street hawkers and advertisements all blaring; the sizzle of hot dogs and kebabs lingering over it all. This is New York. Not the mountains of garbage on the curbs or the smells on the subway platforms, those seem to fade away to the background of what I notice or remember. And that, in my opinion, is what really makes any A-lister, whether city or celebrity: that certain magic equation where the good is so great that it subtracts away the negative.
“Two things to remember in life: Take care of your thoughts when you are alone; and, Take care of your words when you are with people” Author unknown
I have had this quote scribbled on a note page for a long time but it was one of those things that I would always forget about until each time I happened to see it again. Do you ever do that – collect little things or thoughts because you have a hunch that one day they’ll mean more to you? That’s what this was.
I’ve been alone a lot lately, and for an extrovert like myself it’s difficult to spend so much time only in my own company. Don’t get me wrong, I like my own company, but I have a brain that is wired to get energy and ideas from external sources. I come to life after being surrounded by conversation. That’s why the first part of this quote struck me tonight, because I don’t want to risk ruining this time by wallowing in the fear that I might fade away into nothing if I don’t connect with someone soon. They say travelling alone is the best way to find yourself – well I have and I know I need groups of friends around me!
Our thoughts steer us so much more than we realize, just like our words can have a bigger impact on people than we know. I admit to being careless with this sometimes, too. Is it narcissistic to sometimes forget that others think differently than I do? I’ve hurt people with comments I’ve said before the thought was fully formed, or not seeing that it might come across other than I had intended. I’m sorry, and I’m working on it!
I haven’t met any new buddies this past week while I’ve been travelling, and for me it gets harder to do so the longer it goes on this way. There have been friendly conversations at dinner and with people sharing my hostel room, but no one that I’ve connected with enough to make us want to hang out more. And I miss that. Thankfully I have a couple lifelines at home, and a good conversation with my best friend is all I needed to feel better again.
If you like this quote too, feel free to use the image I made. (The background picture is from my walk on the Charles Bridge in Prague yesterday morning, in case you were wondering… ) Oh, and if you know where this quote originally came from please tell me!