I moved to New York 10 years ago last November, 9 years and 7 months of which I have lived in Brooklyn. I arrived from London a trembling 28 year old, feeling ripped away from, and abandoned by a city that I was wholeheartedly in love with, in spite of, and definitely because of, the merciless challenges, loneliness, beauty, grandeur and friendships it offered. Never wanting to live in New York prior to this, I ventured to the “Island at the Center of the World” to hide. It seemed the only city which could similarly devour me, rendering me invisible, to meet whatever fate I felt was predetermined.
I settled immediately in Brooklyn because Manhattan made my heart and thoughts race. Brooklyn offered a semblance of calm. Slowly and steadily, this magical borough nurtured my heart and soul in ways I never thought possible in a large city. Far from being invisible, staying in the same place allowed me to lift my eyes to the sky. Thank you to everyone and everything who has been a part of my story in this wonderful neighborhood. Thank you to 7:15 in the mornings, thank you to Prospect Park where I went for my first run, thank you to my friends at Café Regular, GR’s Cleaners, Geido Sushi, Brooklyn Crepe, Dao Palate, Tikka Grill. I will miss sharing my days with you. I will miss chatting about nothing and everything, our conversations unintentionally exemplifying that Brooklyn is a small town where people take care of each other. Thank you to those who showed me and continue to show me the way – you know who you are and I love you! There is no place like Brooklyn and there are no people like Brooklynites!
Samuel Johnson wrote that “when a man is tired of London he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.” I think the sentiment is true also for New York. Though I am leaving this beloved borough, I am far from being tired of Brooklyn. Instead, I am moving to New York all over again!