That French phrase above, “leaving is like dying a little” is so true in my case. I’m the kind of person who hates goodbyes. Really hates them. Leaving, whether it’s me who’s going or someone else, is always equally hard to bear.
I love my home but I also have my other home in the country, where all the rest of my family is as well. On top of that, I love travelling and whenever I’m abroad and it’s time to go back home, I’m in tears. When my dad is taking me to the train station after a weekend in the country I’ll soon be reaching for a tissue in the car. Just a few months ago in Barcelona it was hard for me even to utter a thank you to the reception guy at our hotel because the mere act of checking out felt so heartbreaking. One of the worst goodbyes in a long time was in 2004 when Pasi and I went to France for almost two weeks and spent the first few days in beautiful La Rochelle and Ile de Ré, chez French couple Kathy (one of my very dearest friends who I’ve known since the tender age of 12 or 13) and Antony. After those fantastic days with them it’s easy for you to imagine what happened when we looked out from the train window and saw Kathy waving at the platform…
View from the Brooklyn Bridge at sunset. Photo by Pasi.
This time was no exception when it comes to the old salt water action. We spent ten glorious, sunny, exciting days in New York City and well… I had a lump in my throat already on the cab to the airport but as soon as the plane took off and we saw the city lights glittering below us in the evening dusk, my eyes welled up and I sort of had my own private case of Niagara Falls, once again, running down my cheeks. I just can’t help it. When something feels so right it’s hard to let it go even if it’s not for the last time. Because it isn’t, that’s for sure.
Street art in East Village, 2nd Avenue. Photo by Pasi.
What is it about New York that’s so great? Although I love it to bits I wouldn’t recommend it to everyone. But if you like cities, I must say that to me it’s the city of all cities. The people, the noise, the traffic, the music, the buildings, the parks, the dogs, the lights, the restaurants, the cafés, the views, the spirit, the history… There’s just something about it that gets under your skin. Under my skin at least. And I know Pasi has the same feeling.
We’ve been back home for over a week now but still I’m in New York every night. When I open my eyes I have to think twice about where I am. I feel like we were away for a month. At work everybody asks, “So, what did you do there?” and I struggle to remember something particular, some good story. The main story, however, is the way that the city felt like. And that’s something that I can’t easily describe except that I felt free there. Like home. Happy. Inspired. In love.
LOVE art by Robert Indiana. Photo by Pasi.
“So what did you do in New York?” What did we do? We walked. We actually saw the city this time, really saw it and felt it. We had sunshine every single day. In 2005 when we were in NYC for the first time we loved it despite the fact that it rained cats and dogs for seven whole days. So we shopped like maniacs! I still mostly wear the clothes that I bought back then! We also went to museums that time, to escape from the impossible weather and I’m glad we did because this time we just didn’t have the heart to spend a whole day inside.
On this trip we were able to take it all in on a whole different level because Pasi and I are definetly walkers. We take transport only if we’re in a hurry or simply too knackered to continue on foot. In Manhattan the distances can kill you sometimes so obviously we purchased the metro card, but only on our third day of the trip. The first days we just walked. The importance of comfortable shoes cannot be ignored in that city! Pasi took a whole bunch of great photos again. I hardly took any as I was too distracted to concentrate on that and I knew I would enjoy Pasi’s photos much more. His Flickr set is here but it’s not quite ready yet, lots more photos yet to come…
Us on a mirror at an ATM in West Village. Photo by Pasi.
And guess what? Now we have friends in New York and in Maine! After we’d already been in the city for a week we finally met up with Jes who came all the way from Maine and her friends Dawn and Tom who live in Queens. And as we’ve all said on several occasions, the feeling of friendship was quite instant! Before we went to eat we stopped for a drink and exchanged gifts. Dawn and Tom gave us delicious hand made chocolates from the Chocolate Bar (where Pasi and I returned later for some gifts to bring home…) and look what I got from Jes alongside one of her lovely ephemera packs. This beautiful vintage glass box and inside it one of her handmade bracelets!! I quite simply treasure these awsome things!
Beautiful gifts from Jes, one of her bracelets and a vintage glass box! Love!
Jes and Dawn are both such wonderful free spirits, a bit bohemian and so artistic, smart, cheerful, girlish, very stylish and just great fun! Dawn and Tom are a lovely couple and Pasi had a lot in common with Tom who he had long conversations with. What a shame that Jes’ husband wasn’t there to join us! We had a fantastic dinner, great conversations and lots of laughs in the very cool Fig & Olive at the Meatpacking District and then went on for a bit of crazy barhopping. It was such a fun night you wouldn’t believe! The downside was that I had a beastly headache all through out the evening and couldn’t try one of those Margaritas but I refused to let that bother me. In this company that was easily done! Thank You so much Jes, Dawn and Tom! Until next time, right? We miss you guys!
I just love those classic fire escapes and the painted wall ads… Photo by Pasi.
On Sunday morning Pasi’s hangover was in his own words “11 miles on a scale of one to ten”. Hehehe! The yummy breakfast we had that day at the Corner Shop Café on Broadway and Bleecker was a lifesaver!
View over Central Park from the Rockefeller Center. Taken on our last morning in the city. Photo by Pasi.
I’ll be sure to linger on the topic of New York City on the next few posts as well. I also have some new jewellery to show as I got some lovely new strands from the Bead Empire on 6th Avenue… And the credit card bill is yet to come, aaargh!
So see you soon! Cheers!