Before I moved to New York, people kept asking me what I was "most afraid of" about living in the city. Shouldn't they be asking what I'm most excited about? I wondered. C'est la vie. There really is something about New York that makes people think you're going to be robbed or stabbed every time you turn the corner. Coincidentally, I told them that my biggest fears were being robbed or stabbed. Or murdered. (Hi mom!) After those three (obvious) choices came things like 'never finding a job' and 'getting lost'. Now, I don't really think I'm going to be murdered or stabbed while I'm here but I do still have a fear of getting lost. This is a pretty silly fear to have when there are so many maps around and plenty of people to ask for directions (you know, if I was really desperate). J has me studying the subway map every day. He even quizzes me. If you're on 81st street and need to get to Wall Street, which train do you get on?! How many transfers? Quick, woman! I started to answer and then realized that it was clearly a trick question because Why in the world would I be on Wall Street?
Heather, 1. J, 0.
Moving to New York City is kind of like starting a new job. You desperately want to know where everything is and how it all works and you don't want anyone to notice that you don't have a damn clue what's going on. Essentially, I want to know where everything is without having to consult a map which would obviously reveal my new-girl status and ruin the fabulous reputation I'm trying to build over here.
To make this happen, J and I have been doing a lot of walking.
We wake up, hop on the subway and don't set a destination. Wherever we happen to get off, we explore. So far this has proven to be a pretty successful method. I've been coming home with sore feet every day, which I like to think means I'm making progress. Not setting a destination is a definite luxury. The perks of unemployment. Zing!
The other day we explored Battery Park and walked along the water. It was foggy and damp and in my opinion, perfect. There was hardly anyone else around. I have quickly discovered that 'having the place to yourself' simply doesn't happen in New York. So this was like discovering a little secret. We walked and walked and walked, got caught in some serious rain, and walked some more.
P.S. I'm giving capital letters a try today. I have mixed feelings about them.