Oh, my friends, New York City was fabulous. I had no idea how wonderful this trip would be. I mean, I knew we’d have fun because we enjoyed the one day we spent there when we were in college, but oh my gracious, it was even better than we imagined!
We spent our 2006 spring break with some of our college friends in Liverpool & Syracuse, NY. We spent one day exploring NYC, but honestly Christopher and I just kind of followed our friends around. So we saw all the major sites, but didn’t do much exploring on our own. This time around, we were looking forward to really getting to know the city a little better.
And see the city, we did! We walked 10-12 miles a day (yes, miles) which meant we were worn out at the end of every day, but it was a good kind of worn out. The kind of worn out where every minute was worth it. We did take the subway a lot, but we enjoyed walking when we could because we liked seeing the city. 🙂
One thing that I was surprised by was just how much I loved being in the city again. I spent the first 12 years of my life in small towns. But just after I turned 13 my family moved to a city of 8 million people where I lived until I went to college. So in my growing up years I experienced both country life and city life. Currently, I live in Memphis which is a city, but it’s on the small side as cities go. It wasn’t until we were walking the streets of NYC that I realized just how much I had missed the big city feel of life.
Don’t get me wrong, I love where I live. I really enjoy visiting big cities and being reminded of how much I loved living in one as a teenager, but it’s not the life for me anymore. I have really gotten used to the pace of life where I live. In a city big enough that I’m close to Target and Starbucks (these are the specific things I point out to our friends who try to get us to move further out into the country, ha!) not to mention that we have a pretty happening “city” scene (complete with incredible food, good shopping, great concerts & plays, and even our own NBA team). But also in a city small enough that I have space for a house with a backyard (important for us with the dog) while still being inside city limits. And where traffic, though a pain sometimes, is limited mostly to rush hour and is pretty tolerable.
So while I was giddy for the first full day just about being back in a big city, Christopher was not quite able to take a full breath until we were inside Central Park and away from all the buildings, noise, and people. He enjoyed visiting NYC, but even the idea of living in a huge city really stresses him out. Memphis felt like a huge metropolis to him when we first moved here. He grew up in a house surrounded by cornfields five miles away from the closest town (which was still only 1,800 people). So other than driving into the closest city a couple of times a week, the laid back, country life was all he knew until he moved to college. Which means that while he enjoys visiting big cities, he never quite feels like he can take a full breath while he’s there.
So it’s good that we settled in Memphis. It’s a good middle ground for us. Enough space for him to breathe and enough city for me to enjoy. It probably seems weird for me to write so much about Memphis when this post is really about NYC, but mostly I just wanted to have a written reminder of just how great a fit our city is for us. And to remember just how much I loved visiting a big city again. 🙂
Lots more coming on our NYC trip. From things we did to places we ate to thoughts we had. I’ll be sharing it all! 😀
Did you grow up in a big city or the country or something in between? And what type of place do you live now? Do you prefer one over the other?