And so my glamorous year of blogging begins with me, posting for the first time in 2013, 13 fitting days after its start!

I have an excuse though — I went to New York for the first time. And oh. It was excellent. I could really imagine myself living there for a few years of my young life (and yes, I’d have to be young).

It was a bit different than I’d imagined, however. For some reason, I had trouble imagining to myself what a city like New York would be. There are a few static images I had in my mind: of the upper-class streets that Blair Waldorf walks in Gossip Girl; of the overcrowded, neon-lit Times Square mayhem that is shown every New Year’s Eve during the countdown; of the busy corporate/media-glutted district glimpsed in episodes of 30 Rock; of the Village’s quiet, artistic Bay-Area-like vibe that is, embarrassingly enough, also sprung from the camera shots of Gossip Girl. Yes… I see now my mistake. I watch way too much television.

I was surprised by New York’s small size and its incredibly fast metro (while I tried to defend San Francisco’s public transportation system, it simply can’t hold a candle to dedicated underground subways). I was surprised to see that the Village wasn’t “quaint” at all, but a bustling hub of shops, markets, and restaurants — like the Mission, without quite all the grime. Conversely, the Upper East Side (though certainly the land of the wealthy) failed to inspire in me the same awe that I feel when looking at the homes of rich landowners in San Francisco or Orange County. I did catch a glimpse into someone’s home through a doorway — there was a maid tending to an interior seemingly designed by Crate and Barrel. However, UES’ streets were not quite as flashy as I would have thought. The areas of Harlem we visited, too, was just like a more condensed version of downtown or north Oakland. I’d’ imagined a complete reversal of the urban experience on the opposite coast, but was surprised to find otherwise. It was all just one big city, just like San Francisco is one big city. Immensely diverse and full of opportunities.

The biggest opportunity of which, of course, was to spend money. And oh, did we spend. Mostly on food. Almost solely on food. More on this later…


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