As a kid in Long Island, we would refer to hitting up the main strip of Garden City, "going to town". You would go into town to see the little boutiques, pick up a book at the library, go to the butcher, see your pals, walk around aimlessly while your parents food shopped.
The City on the other hand, was New York City. That was where you went on special shopping trips for dresses, or to fancy dinners, class trips to museums, weekend escapes to crazy galleries or shows.
Growing up like this gave me a very different perspective of New York City than my friends who I have made who moved to New York City have.
People come to New York City to be where the magic is made. Movies, big deals, big apples. It's all quite a grand allusion of opportunity and challenge.
Meanwhile, I'm just here because when I graduated college I had a job here. It's not where I pictured myself living when I "grew up".
If you asked me when I was little where I would live, I would tell you a house. I would've told you I was going to be a Mommy by the time I was 24, and I would've told you about the three dogs I'd have that would run around my giant back yard. I probably also would've said that I was going to be a writer on WKRP in Cincinnati, because I loved that show as a kid.
If you asked me when I was a teenager where I would live, I would've told you a quaint house in New Hampshire on a lake. I would've said, "I want to live and eat naturally and own a store that sells either music or organic food."
My high school boyfriend used to dream of us living in New York City together and I would have no part in his projections. "Dude, the city is gross and dirty. We go there all the time and it's just all stress. I need the mellow country life."
Today, if you asked me where I would live, I would have to say New York City. Partially, because at this point I know nothing else. I mean I travel occasionally, but I always find myself longing for the various creature comforts of NYC.
Where else can you have a convenient subway system, amazing pizza, the greatest shows, and the smell of street vendor peanuts on a cold day?
I think if I had to chose other places to live, I probably could, but ultimately, The City has become my city.