HOME (New York)

New York never disappoints. it feels, always, immediately like home, a word whose definition has expanded very much for me in the past six months. Home is people, and the feel of a place, and a strange room filled with sage smoke; it’s a skyline, a string of lights, a song, and a book read on the bus. 

One of the first things I saw in Brooklyn, fresh from many flights, was a woman sitting on the curb crying into her cellphone. it sounds strange, but people crying on the street is one of my favorite things about this city. We live on the sidewalks, always surrounded, and sometimes the only place to cry is on the curb. I’ve been there. You cry, and people walk right on by, but there’s something nice in the not noticing. it’s a pretending not to notice, a giving of space in a crowded city. it’s like being held and contained by the net of New York: Your energy part of her energy, his smile part of her tears, my arrival part of someone else’s departure.

On the subway I shared a car with the rangy man who asks for change in a looping, rolling soliloquy. He is no one I would ever remember forgetting, but he was so familiar right away. On Bedford Avenue a woman in a purple dinosaur suit crouched and danced and taunted, calling out something about poop. 

I am full with the feeling of being here. I’m staying in Dumbo, with view of both its bridges, which makes me feel like I'm in Brooklyn and Manhattan at the same time. Last night I had dinner with old friends around their kitchen table, in the last place I was before I left. We ate swiss chard and sausage and rice and beans and I felt full, so full, with contentment and friends. I have the best friends, everywhere.