I’ve always envisioned my first New York City apartment to look like something out of an Anthropologie catalog. Exposed brick walls, one of those half-moon floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking Bleecker Street, old hardwood floors, hand-woven Moroccan rugs strewn about, mismatched vintage furniture, Marrakesh jewel-toned lamps, an iron, spiral staircase leading to a wall-to-wall library of books, a giant leather reading chair – the kind your body just sinks into…
I thought it was an impractical dream that would never come true. Until 6 months ago… when it did.
My Upper East Side, two-bedroom apartment, tucked away on York Ave., looks nothing like the exotic palace I meticulously designed in my mind.
It’s tiny, probably as big as that floor-to-ceiling window I’ve always wanted. The perfectly matched furniture is from the not-so-faraway land of IKEA and the bathroom sink… well, let’s just say it’s a good thing I have small hands. Oh. And we can’t forget the occasional cockroach, a repulsive species that definitely did not exist in my fantasy vision. (I will never not scream and lunge my body onto the couch as if it’s about to eat my feet whenever I see one.)
But it’s still perfect – charming in it’s simplicity.
In the morning the sunlight shines through the white, sheer curtains and illuminates my entire bedroom, making it difficult to stay in bed. I’m not at all a morning person so normally, this would irritate me. But I’m in New York City and there’s an energy here that surges through the air and trickles into your bones; it’s impossible to ignore. There’s always something to see, somewhere to go, someone new to meet.
I’m determined to make the most out of my time here and in 6 months I’ve already seen more compelling art exhibitions, eaten at more delicious restaurants, met more interesting people, and enjoyed more adventures than I can count.
That doesn’t mean that there haven’t been days when it feels as if the entire city is conspiring against me, or that there haven’t been obstacles to overcome. Like killing my first cockroach, for instance– my roommate and I have developed a fool-proof method of assassination. And if I had a penny for every time I got caught in a rainstorm without an umbrella, I’d be living in a penthouse. But each time I overcome a challenge this city tests me with, I feel myself grow a little bit stronger. Even with the disappointments, obnoxious attitudes, challenging work days, and sometimes lonely moments, living here has proven to be better than any fantasy I could have ever imagined. It’s real, and I’ve never felt more like myself.
So why am I telling you this? Like I said before, from Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Rooms at the David Zwirner Gallery, to 4am Artichoke Pizza and outdoor movie screenings in Bryant Park, to drinks on the MET’s rooftop garden… I’ve done and seen so many wonderful things since I’ve moved here, I thought it was about time I started to write them down. So I hope you enjoy!