A Weekend in a Different New York

This weekend I took a rather short trip to New York so that I could see my cousin from Korea who is there on business for a couple of weeks, as well as to see my brother who I haven’t seen in a half-year or so. My cousin and I generally chat a few times a week over Instant Messenger and I consider her pretty close, so I wasn’t going to miss the opportunity to see her, especially since the last time I saw her was a few years ago. The trip was really really nice: it was great to see my cousin and brother as well as other family and many old friends. Going all around town, visiting place I often frequented when I lived there(the Chinese bakery on Mott and Canal, the Martial Arts shop there on Mott, the Pink Pony in the Lower East Side; these places become the usual hangouts even now when I go to New York), and a fantastic late night karaoke session until 3:30am the following morning, really was quite a joy.

On the other hand, the city felt so different too, as streets I was intimately familiar with and often walked were still there but the shops all completely replaced with new ones, and great big new developments (the Adidas store at Broadway and Houston, the Wholefoods at Union Square, the new apartment building on Houston bordering the Lower East Side) really altered the cityscape I knew. This trip really felt quite different from all the other trips I’ve made to New York since I left, as if we–New York and I–had both moved on and changed enough that we really didn’t know each other anymore, even if we had a common past once. Maybe I’ll get to know New York again sometime, but for now I feel a bit more in tune with San Francisco.

It was a good time though, and definitely too short a trip. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing my cousin again sometime in the future, and will look forward to seeing my brother come December.


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