Whew! I’m back in San Francisco and it feels wonderful to be home. New York was amazing: dark, yet bright; snowy, yet warm and cozy; raucous, yet peaceful. In other words, full of contradictions. As any truly great city should be.
While I loved our whole trip, major highlights were Daniel Radcliffe, dinner with my boyfriend at the very cozy Hane Sushi, pumpkin and pretzel frozen yogurt at Momofuku, the American wing of the Met, the Public Library’s 100 Years exhibit – Jack Kerouac’s harmonica, Sylvia Plath’s diary, and the original stuffed Winnie the Pooh! – and wandering down the Highline with coffee in hand, just to watch the city wake up.
I will say, however, that I totally missed San Francisco. While New York wins in some respects – better shopping, awesome public transit, and fewer hobos accosting you at every turn (it’s not PC, I totally know that, and I’m saying it anyway), there is a lot of be said for our infamous City by the Bay.
The black wrought iron, lack of nature and omnipresent skyscrapers make New York feel a bit grim. I missed the candy colored Haight, the over-the-top Castro, and the green, eucalyptus-infused Presidio. I missed knowing what neighborhood I was in the moment I opened my eyes, because they’re all so different and distinct. I missed “and a side of locally grown, organic mesclun greens” accompanying every single overpriced menu item. I missed seeing the bridge every morning from my window, my little corner of the world.
But most of all, I missed the people. I missed tie-dye, pink hair, and nude with a side of tube socks. I missed Marina girls bumping up against bohemians and bankers on the bus. I missed the bike couriers who look like Kurtz’s tribe in Heart of Darkness, but not because they’re crazy – they just dress like that.
We are a city of freaks and weirdos. Or, as we’re called in Tales, a “city of hippies and mass murders!” New York certainly isn’t lacking in the crazy department, but if I’m going to live in a city of crazy people, I think I’ll stick to my kind of crazy; the San Francisco kind.
So good on ya, New York. It was a nice try. And though I’ll never stay more than a few days, I’ll definitely be back. If not for the weather, then definitely for the bagels, the sushi, and to continue to explore your little corner of the world.
Do you have a favorite city? I’d love to know!More NY/SF comparisons to come, and the winner of the birthday giveaway will be announced tomorrow, too!