Next week I’ll be heading over to New York City (if weather conditions allow it) on vacation with my girlfriend. I’ve been trying to write something meaningful about this trip since the minute we bought the plane tickets, but so far I hadn’t really been able to come up with anything. And then I looked at this.
It’s hard to overstate how anxious and excited I am about this trip. New York City has always been the dream for me. I grew up in a small town, and moved to the biggest city in the country as soon as I could. I have always had that hunger inside me, that part of me that needs to conquer whatever challenges the world can throw at me. To be able to thrive in the greatest city in the world, get to know it and experience it running through my veins.
New York represents the ultimate challenge. A city made of dreams, and promise. A place that entices our senses more so than any other city in the planet. We have been flooded with images of this dreamland ever since we were born: in cinema, music, television… it is ever present in our collective unconscious. Stories of personal realization, love, success… Of loss and tragedy, too. I still remember watching the horrific news of the 9/11 hit, and the complete shock and utter disorientation that came next. The uncertainty that unfolded as everybody looked around and wondered if such a tragedy could really be happening.
But New York is a city like no other, and its will cannot be subdued or destroyed with a million planes. It represents the better part of ourselves: the mix of cultures, the global sentiment of belonging no matter where we were born, the ideal that together we are stronger, capable of anything. The possibility.
I’ve never been in New York and yet, I know that city. I know it like I know an old friend that I may not have seen in years. There’s a part of me that has always thought of myself as a New Yorker. The part of me that wants to dream.