There are the days where you will never catch the train, where you get screamed at and called a bitch because you were walking down the street. Where you hear a parent yelling at their child just for making a funny face and you are on the edge of tears because there are so many people begging on the trains and streets that you just can't help even a fraction of them. Where it is so damn hot can't bear the thought of the subway platform or so cold that the wind whipping through the avenues off the Hudson makes you feel like you've landed in Antarctica. Where the customers you are serving treat you like you are worthless because of your chosen vocation. Where it is all just so overwhelming that you break down and cry on the train in front of one hundred strangers.
But when you can't take another punch and feel like you are loosing your grip, New York City will let up and show you mercy.
There are the fleeting connections to a stranger based on a passing occurrence and acknowledged by only eye contact and a slight smile. That block where by some magic you find ten seconds of complete silence. The multitude of visiting friends and relatives (that never would visit if you lived somewhere like Madison, WI). The fact that it is acceptable to have a martini with lunch. Stepping down onto the platform right as the train pulls into the station. A perfect weather day spent lying on the grass in Prospect Park. An art exhibit or play that challenges your world. The 5th drink buy-back at your favorite bar. The impromptu, amazing street performance that moves all those viewing to feel suddenly like long-lost friends.
And sometimes the city gives you food. Maybe like completely fresh Thai dumplings prepared on the street (as a one time only deal) by Pure Thai Shophouse at the 9th Ave. International Food Festival.
|The dumpling wrapper was made right there on the street when you ordered them and then filled with a slightly sweet, crispy, and peanut flavored meat. Not quite like any dumpling I've ever had before.|
Right when you are on the verge of giving up on the city, it reminds you why it would be almost unimaginable to live anywhere else.