Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Strange Days

New York, 2014
It's strange, but mostly nice, to be back in Brooklyn.

Six weeks away...that's the longest stretch of time I've been away from the city in a decade. Seeing so much green, so much ocean, and getting so much fresh air in Maine, I had all but forgotten the sensory overload that is the city.

Suddenly there's music everywhere, jackhammers and traffic and smells, people's elbows and overheard snippets of conversation.

Another thing that's jarring is how many transactions take place in a day here. I mean, of course I remember that New York is expensive, but being back to the land of $7 boxes of cereal and $11 pressed juice and $4 coffees still comes as a shock.

Axel seemed happily disconcerted to be back in a place that's so familiar. 'Home' he said on Sunday night. I think he gets it, basically. It might take me a little longer to catch up.

I loved letting him run a bit wild this summer, in such a pristine place and in a very small community, surrounded by family. But then this is our 'real' life, with jobs and tasks and friends and the cacophony of noise and visuals that is urban life.

We are not moving to Maine anytime soon, for a variety of reasons (not least because it's hard to make a living there, doing what we do.) But naturally the sudden juxtaposition of two places we love makes me think about our choice to raise our kids in the city, and whether all the culture and energy of New York confers any advantage on a child, or if it's just white noise.

I also plunged back into work, and edit meetings, and commuting on Monday morning, which marked the end of my unofficial maternity leave. It's struck me that I really like what I do for a living, so there's that. We have a good little life here too, the four of us in the city. It's just very very different...

Last week I was having conversations about deserted islands; this week it's New York fashion week.

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