New York. Familiarity on steroids.

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The view on ‘Top of the Rock’

You know when you look forward to something for such a long time that somehow when you finally get to do it you are afraid it may be a bit of a let down?

I wanted to see New York since I was seven.  That was fifty years ago.  Almost a lifetime. New York didn’t meet my expectations. It exceeded them.

I love cities.  Always did, I was born in one and grew up in one.  When emigrating to Australia my father did the ‘Australian middle class thing’ to live in the suburbs I found it depressing.  The lack of people and noise.  When due to unforeseen circumstances we moved to Melbourne’s inner suburbs near shops, restaurants and people I felt re-born.

This is why I loved New York.  I didn’t feel anxious one bit, quite the opposite, I was incredibly comfortable.   I know this may sound wanky, but as I experienced the city for the first time walking 40th Street to go to the New York Public Library on 5th Ave I could feel the vibrations of the city and it was something I felt at home with.

This is the opposite when I am in the bush where I always feel a sense of mild anxiety.  Knowing there are few or no people around, where if it gets dark there are no lights to make it like day, really feeling like a fish out of water.

Of course it is also different.  But the difference is in the size of the experience.  Is like watching a movie on a laptop, and then watching it on 3D IMAX.  The movie is the same, the action of watching is the same, but the experience of watching it on a huge screen in 3D is like walking in an Australian city and New York.

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Even for a city lover like me Times Square was a bit too much

However I did ask myself whether visiting for a couple of weeks and living there would change my perception.  Whether having your senses being constantly stimulated would eventually create a sense of fatigue.  I experienced a bit of this when while waiting for tickets for a Broadway show we entered the St. Malachy Roman Catholic Church and it was such an oasis of peace, quiet and calm that I really welcomed.

One thing for certain.  I want to go back.

 

1 Comment

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One response to “New York. Familiarity on steroids.

  1. Great piece! New York is an amazing and beautiful place.

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