Thursday, September 8, 2016

Once Upon a Time in New York City

Sigh. How has it already been one week since I embarked on one of the most magical and exciting trips of my life? I still feel as if it were all a dream. A lovely, lovely dream. I am happy to report that first of all, New York City was everything I hoped it would be times a trillion. Secondly, I can say with all confidence that I do not have any regrets regarding my New York skyline tattoo which I had done without having been to the city. Whew! I honestly am not even sure where to begin when I talk about my weekend. So many wonderful things transpired, and I feel myself start to gush when I share even a little bit of the adventures I had.

New Yorkers loved to ask the tourists these three questions:

- Are you a first timer in the city?
- What has been the most surprising thing about the city/people?
- What has been your favorite moment (so far)?

It was my first time in the city. I wasn't overly surprised by much except that some
New Yorkers were actually very nice and helpful. My favorite moment happened on Thursday night, the first night I was in New York City. I should start by giving a little background to this moment. I have watched Jimmy Fallon since his SNL days. I watched him on Late Night and continued to tune in when he took over the Tonight Show. If you ask me to name my favorite sketches, I can do so without hesitation (Hot Tub Lov-ahs, Disneyland Breakfast, Tight Pants, and any Lip Sync Battle ever done). In early 2015, my roommate and I decided to make vision boards for ourselves to set goals for the upcoming year. I started going through old magazines and came across a small picture of Jimmy Fallon dressed up as a bumblebee with his daughter. I decided that if I was going to put NYC and Tiffany's on my vision board, I might as well add Jimmy too.

Imagine the excitement and surprise I felt nearly 1.5 years later when I found myself walking up the grand staircase and into the Peacock Lounge at NBC Studios. As I sat waiting to go into Studio 6B, I kept telling myself what Jimmy always says to the audience- "You're here! You made it! This is it! Welcome, welcome, welcome!" The evening only got better. Meg Ryan was there. John Mulaney and Nick Kroll were there. The Roots were amazing. Being part of The Tonight Show set the bar for an unforgettable time in what is now one of my favorite cities.

Aside from The Tonight Show (because honestly, how does one top The Tonight Show?), other favorite moments included touring NBC Studios and visiting the SNL studio, buying something from Tiffany's (and therefore having my name added to their registry), sitting on the actual Central Perk couch from Friends, touring Soho and Little Italy, having a waiter in Little Italy "Joey Tribbiani" me ("How you doin'?"), and going to one of the few remaining original speakeasies and drinking a Ruby Slipper from a teacup. But honestly, who am I kidding? The entire trip was my favorite part- from the moment I drove towards Manhattan until my plane took off five days later.

One evening I was in the Empire State Building looking out over the city, and I realized I felt a connection to this place. I jokingly call myself a Restless Wanderer because I tend to grow tired of where I am living and places never feel like home. I will say people, such as family and friends, can make a place feel like home, but I want to feel that I belong to the city where I am living. As I watched the city lights, my heart felt like a missing piece was sliding into place. I belonged there.

What an amazing and overwhelming feeling to know that you have found your place in this world! It was as if the restlessness in me had quieted and in its stead came the knowledge that I could thrive in this city and be myself, and that is all I have ever wanted. Until we meet again, New York, and may it be someday soon.

"One belongs to New York instantly. One belongs to it as much in five minutes as in five years." 
- Tom Wolfe

1 comment:

Serenity Bohon said...

If this doesn't convince me to make a vision board, nothing will. I'm so happy you got there and that it was all you hoped. So few things in life are what we hope, but New York so is.