The Concrete Jungle

They call it the city that never sleeps.  It’s an appropriate name, but there’s more to it than that.  New York is like a noisy roommate who’s idea of music is blasting the sounds of police sirens: it’s not just the city that doesn’t get any sleep.  It’s incredible really.  Give me a piece of cold rocky ground and I can sleep like a kitten in a pile of warm sweaters, but stick me in New York with nothing in particular to do and sleep dries up like a puddle in the Sahara.

It’s not just sleep either.  Feel like going for a nice little stroll through the city?  Careful or you’ll end up like Mustafa in the Lion King.  Don’t you know people in New York have places to go and people to see?  Now what makes these places and people so damn urgent remains a mystery to me, but that doesn’t keep me from adopting the attitude.  I didn’t find one minute to write the whole time I was there.

Of course this level of intensity can be incredibly stimulating.  There’s perhaps no other city on Earth you can leave for six months, come back to and then find yourself surrounded by new things.  As I was walking to the country’s largest used book store, I just stumbled upon a new gourmet cheese store that had a cheese making factory built right in.  I mean who comes up with these things?!

Now on Broadway: Cheese Making!

The dark side is the soul crushing pressure and stress that comes along with life in the city.  It’s enough to turn anyone into a self-absorbed workaholic with a Napoleon complex.  Want to share the details of your six month Odyssey with some good listeners and get some positive feedback?  Well you’ve come to the wrong place.  The jungle is a dangerous place: it’s ill or be killed, every man for himself here.

New York City has been my home for over ten years: I love it and hate it.  I’ve known it as a student and a worker.  I’ve lived everywhere from Wall St. to a couch in someone’s Brooklyn basement.  Rich or poor, happy or depressed, I’ve seen it from every angle.  It’s a place like no other, terrible and wonderful at the same time.  Words and pictures can’t capture it, no more than they can capture a sunrise or a mountain top, but then again, that’s never stopped me from trying.  Nor should it, after all, I’m from New York.

Do you look up at a skyscraper or does it look down on you?

Categories: General, Travel, United States | Tags: , , | 3 Comments

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3 thoughts on “The Concrete Jungle

  1. Maria

    So is this cheese place at Union Square? 🙂
    u’r right about a constant rush in NYC. I’m busy all the time, but if u ask me what I have done during the day, I even won’t be able to answer! This often pisses me off, cause there’s no time left for myself, for relax, communication and bla-bla.

  2. Anonymous

    Nice skyscraper pic.

  3. Concrete Jungle is right!
    I have been to NYC 3 times. Once when I was 8 yrs. old. It was exciting but scary! The thing I did not like at all was that I could not see the sky!
    When I was 18 it was a little better because we went shopping and out to eat.
    In my early 20’s I took a road trip with two friends. We drove straight through. As I was walking out of a McDonalds in a daze drinking my coffee, I was lucky that my friend pulled me out of the way of a car driving on the sidewalk. We walked all over town from poor to rich. Very sad to see all the homeless. I never felt so alone while surrounded by so many people.
    Some people love it, but not me. I enjoy the trees, birds, beaches, warmer weather and friendly people!
    I remember asking you some places you may like to live but you didn’t mention anywhere in the U.S. Think about it and let me know. And remember you are always welcome here! 🙂

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