New York State of Mind

Cue the Billy Joel radio and take the Hudson River Line; it’s time for the recount of my latest adventure where one may get a New York state of mind.

Last week, the Bot* and I went to NYC for a couple of days.

It was Trey’s first time in the city so we hit all the highlights: we donned our red hunting hats and did our best melancholic Holden Caulfield impressions as we walked around The American Museum of Natural History; tried to solve the mystery of ‘where do the ducks in Central Park go in the winter’ and got lost in the woods on the way; walked The High Line; pressed our noses against the technicolor SeaGlass Carousel (just seeing this beautiful contraption made me giddy!); saw my favorite verdigris vixen, Lady Liberty; rang doorbells and sang about incredible things at The Book of Mormon; crossed the Brooklyn Bridge by foot; was mesmerized by the sheer genius of the Upright Citizens Brigade improv performers; browsed through hundreds of chapbooks at Berl’s Brooklyn Poetry Shop; and time traveled back to the groovy 60s at the Public Library’s rotating free exhibit.

What a wonderful tiny-holiday!

Now I’m whiling my days back in Ann Arbor. As much as a workaholic that I am, being home reminds me that while writing stories is one major aspect of my life and who I am, it’s not the only thing. There’s my family, my friends, my health, my daily enjoyment of being alive. All of which are important to me and contribute significantly to why I am able to write the stories that I do.

It’s tough though, because I often feel like I am always living two worlds at once. Like no matter how hard I try to stay present, a part of my mind is a little helicopter leaf in the wind, swirling into the bodies and lives of my characters, which always leaves me anxious to get back to writing. It’s a good thing I am not a gymnast, because I feel like I am majorly falling off this balance beam sometimes.

Perhaps the best antidote to this problem is reading. Reading (unlike writing for me) can be done in public spaces. Therefore, I can be “present” with others and deeply absorbed by another character simultaneously. I’ve currently been obsessing over reading Exit West by Mohsin Hamid, Call Me By Your Name by André Aciman, Seventeen and J: Two Novels by Kenzaburo Oē, and sending literary postcards (via Bibliophilia) to friends…because I am all about saving the handwritten letter.

And of course, there is always Saki to the forever rescue.

*For those of you new to the blog or new to me, I frequently call my boyfriend Bot, although neither of us can recall how this nickname came into being. Perhaps that will be a sleuthing project one day on this blog. However, today is not that day.

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