Sometimes, New York City just sweeps you off your feet. Other times, she knocks you on your ass. Either way, she never apologizes.
As an eager college student who immediately said yes to a summer internship in Manhattan, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect. To be honest, all I knew was what I saw in Sex and the City, Ugly Betty, and The Devil Wears Prada. Safe to say, I experienced bits and pieces from each of these fictional properties and was hooked. When I headed back to Ohio at the end of the summer, it felt like I was being snatched from my life force.
I finished school, worked for about a year to save money, and moved back to New York City full-time. I stayed for 8 years. Looking back over the years, I have to say I’m shockingly impressed with the boy who had his parents drop him off in Astoria with no job and very little money in the bank. That one summer in the city was amazing, but it wasn’t a true representative of life in New York. In addition to all of the good, it can also be depressing, exhausting, and downright scary. That can take a toll on one’s mental health. At least it did for me.
So, after 8 years, I needed a change. It’s why I made the decision to relocate to Chicago. But before I waved goodbye to the city where I grew into an adult, I took some time to visit one of my favorite neighborhoods, Greenwich Village, to photograph some of the many spots I associate with my love, and frustration, with New York City.
As I type up this post, I’ve actually had almost a full year away from New York City. I needed space even with these images that I have captured. It’s been amazing, too. I feel healthier and more balance. Plot twist: I’ve also realized that New York is home. My lease here in Chicago is almost up and I have decided not to renew. In just a couple of months, I’ll be making the trek back to the East Coast and officially planting my roots where I know they belong.
New York, you really are a sneaky one, aren’t you?