Today I went exploring with two dear DC friends of mine, Aliya and Josh. Without a plan for the day, I decided to take them to some of New York’s best; a mix of places I’ve been meaning to see (The High Line) and personal favorites I’ve been wanting to revisit (Momofuku Milk Bar from last summer’s NYC excursion). Our time was open-ended, the weather was perfect and today, New York felt endless but not overwhelming.
My favorite part about living here so far is how visually stimulating the city is. Every new neighborhood means a new chance to see something inspiring, and that inspiration comes in all shapes and forms: paintings on buildings, the installation art in shop windows, a street performer’s costume, even the way the skyline looks from different vantage points.
We finished the day off eating dim sum in Chinatown, a neighborhood that I now fondly refer to as home. While nothing of great importance happened today, I feel like our adventure will be a memory I cherish for a very long time. There’s something to be said for simply enjoying the company of good friends, with zero agenda but to make the moments you have together wonderful.
When life hands you lemonade, sometimes you’ve just gotta smile and say “thanks”.
You know that feeling when you’re immersed in something entirely new and different and every experience starts to feel a bit like poetry for the senses? All of your excitement and fear runs together and makes you wish you could write songs or spit rhymes so that you could accurately convey all it is that you’re seeing, hearing, thinking, feeling.
I have been given the opportunity of a summer in Manhattan, brimming with the potential for adventure, exploration, self-discovery and development. I will be the advertising intern for Daryl Roth Theater; I start Monday and I’m teetering at the edge of a big, long diving board, just waiting to dive in. I’m a little nervous, very excited and, hopefully, I will make a splash.
Sure, I am living in a 100 square-foot apartment (get ready for a “room tour” — no really, it’s just one room so the tour will be short). Sure, I still question whether I am cut out for all of this. But I am starting to realize that all of these challenges and changes are just a part of a larger, more beautiful equation. And in this city, I feel electric.
A dear friend told me not too long ago that he thought my spark had dimmed and I acknowledged that there was definitely some truth to his words. This semester I chose to push to the back burner a lot of things that gave me joy, sacrificing them for the sake of school work and other responsibilities. While it’s hard to feel the every day impact of giving these things up, looking back on the last three months, I knew that I had become less happy with myself for not putting more into these outlets.
It has been a long time since my last post, and I am so thrilled to be throwing myself back in the saddle, especially when it feels like my life has gone from “pause” to “play”. And now, I will rewind to give you all a better glimpse at a couple landmark moments from the past few months worth sharing:
Many more big city adventures to come, and for this I couldn’t be happier.
A warning to everyone before I start this post — I have just spent the last four days back home on the West Coast and I am feeling introspective. It’s spring break, and I have been looking forward to this time off because every part of me has needed it. Not because I feel physically overworked or burnt out, but more because I have no idea what happened to the month of February. In January, I was in the starting blocks, waiting for the gun shot to indicate the start of the race. February was my 400 meter dash — I don’t think I was even racing against anyone but myself and maybe time. I was always on the move, updating a never ending list of things to do and places to be. There were a lot of joyful moments in the month of February, but also a lot of times when I wouldn’t know what day of the week it was or what I had eaten for lunch. During this time, I would always recall a line from one of my favorite movies, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off:
“Life moves pretty fast — if you don’t stop and look around every once and a while, you could miss it.”
Spring break couldn’t have come at a better time — I have the chance to stop, reassess and take a cold hard look at where I am, the state of things. Going home for a few days was a good start to this. I road tripped to California with my parents, and while there were still times when my head would be moving in eight different directions at once, I had some chances to stare out the window and watch the giant windmills spin in the sky. Something about the movement of these giant mechanisms quieted the spinning in my mind.
From a sartorial standpoint, my trip home was also very good to me. Ever one to pursue a shopping adventure, my mom pulled off the road in Palm Desert at the first sight of a thrift store. It was there I picked up a sequin rainbow mini-dress (it is even cooler than it sounds) and some vintage Prada flatforms that will be a staple in my wardrobe this spring/summer. Looking forward to previewing both of these purchases on SLB in the coming weeks.
I also had the great fortune of inheriting my grandfather’s vintage Burberry trench coat. There is something so cool and authentic about owning an item passed down through the generations, especially something as timeless as a Burberry trench. This coat will stay with me through every major milestone in my life, until one day I can hand it down to a grandchild or niece or nephew who can appreciate it just as much as I do.
I also had the chance to visit a super groovy vintage shop in Palm Desert. The Fine Art of Design almost felt like a museum, there were so many fabulous designer pieces from across the decades, a collection that was clearly lovingly curated with just the right amount of whimsy and eccentricity. Enter fabulous Todd Oldham jacket that I referred to as “the technicolor cube-y jacket” when my mother picked it up:
When I get my first real grown up job out of college (with my first grown up paycheck), I will make plans to come back here so I can stock my wardrobe with a few more whimsical goodies — maybe this Moschino top will wait there faithfully for me…
I am writing this post on the plane en route back to DC. My break is only half way over and I plan to make the most out of these next few days, savoring every moment when I can silence that chatter in my brain. I have written out a manifesto for myself, similar to Emily’s — maybe at some point soon, I can post it, but for now it will remain tucked away as a reminder of all the beliefs I hold near and dear to my heart. It’s easy for me to lose sight of these things when I start running my race, but I’ve realized that it doesn’t need to be a sprint. I am hoping to finish off this semester slow and steady — it’s less about that moment you cross the finish line, and more about the moments that get you there.