Monday, October 20, 2014

missing my new york window

it's rather easy, when you're walking down the busy streets of new york city, to forget to look up. cyndy tried to warn us about this, but i'm not sure i fully appreciated it until wandering alone on my last day. i looked up at the imposing structures lining 5th avenue ahead of me and found them quite surprising and surprisingly the opposite of beautiful. they are dominant, cold, masculine, insurmountable, full of inhuman perfect lines and squareyness. they're not comforting or hyggeligt. at all. and i wonder whether they were shaped by the people who made them or whether the people who made them were shaped by them. or whether those lines blurred along the way and it's now impossible to say. do they inspire a cold, clinical, hard view of the world? one that resulted in the hubris of the financial crisis, which we're all still trying to shake off? would the world be a different place if the architecture of new york city was different? but could the architecture of new york city be any different than it is? or was it destined to be this way?

what is it that draws us to a place? makes us love it? or hate it almost instantly? everyone always told me that i would love new york. and in many ways, i did. the pulse, the vibe, the walkability, the whole sense that it was just alive and happening in every imaginable way. the food. the people having total screaming matches on the street at another person or into a telephone. the diversity. but i wouldn't want to live there. i think it would get to me after awhile. all that erect, hard, agressive squareyness.

so while i loved every minute of my first trip to new york, i'm not a new york person. i didn't fall head over heels for it the way i did with cape town. or london. or istanbul. or seattle. or san francisco. or moscow. to be fair, i'm not sure i'd fall for moscow in the same way today. it had to do with a certain phase and time of my life. and perhaps i just missed my new york window.

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the architecture of new york city got amy thinking as well. 

1 comment:

Ariadne said...

I loved New York. No, not to live there! But I loved it. I loved how the skyscrapers are not one close to the other so you still get a lot of light. I loved the people, too many people, so different, but so friendly. I loved how I walked around without fear. I loved all the parks and the sightseeing. I didn't love the food. I didn't love the Underground.AriadnefromGreece!