As I settle into my second week I have found myself living more like a local, a little more on auto-pilot if you will. I know which train to catch, where to go, a left turn here and a right turn there. I have the vegan delivery sorted courtesy of Seamless and the mani/pedi down thanks to Honey nail salon. No longer do I stare at wonder at my Aine puppy on the daily commute but merely wish him a passing good morning (I have named him Wilberforce for those who are interested).
When I noticed this the other day, a little in horror truth be told, it got me thinking about the nicety of normal. That, to a degree, this quiet level of belonging is comforting. We often strive for the new and the unusual, which (to an extent) can only be right. However, it shouldn’t be to the exclusion of appreciating the calm and comfort that comes with the quiet reassurance of knowing your way – both figuratively and literally. That said, what is imperative is retaining the appreciation and sense of wonder that exists when something is new. The recognition of the value of the sunrise (at Columbus Circle) or the sunset (in the Bowery), of the light hitting a building, or a bird feeding its young – all of which you have seen a thousand times at home but which you meet with a new found awe when the other side of the world (as my photograph album can attest to). I can’t help but think that if we can keep this lens on the world, even when surrounded by the familiar, then we are more than half way to living a good life.
Talking of the familiar, this week was filled with a treat indeed as friends from around the world arrived in New York for a work function (hence the lack of blogging). It has been such a great few days as people from Australia, Iceland, England and other parts of the US all came together to eat, drink, share adventures and perhaps do a little work in the process. It is such a great group of people who get to meet several times a year and, when we do, it is as if no time has passed at all.
In contrast, very much a new experience was being taken by a wonderful host to Korea town (via an obligatory trip to the Ace hotel). My first foray into the theatre of the Korean barbecue was truly a night to remember and, thanks to a little restraint regarding the very free flowing soju, remember it I did. I seriously recommend a trip to K-town, the restaurants are pure theatre, the food is delicious (and abundant) and it was a wonderful way to finish a great week. We ate at the fantastic Kang Ho Dong Baekjeong where the hosts were some of the friendliest people you can meet, cooking a feast on the table before you and going out of their way to accommodate dietary requirements. Just be prepared for the birthday celebrations as the restaurant chatter gives way to Gangam Style celebrations. Forgive the pictures, they are the product of a very fun evening…