Lest you think I spend all my time pining over places I used to live: I love it here.
Every single time we go over a rise, there's that skyline.
(In the winter, when the trees are bare, we can glimpse it from our living room: oh so amazing.)
It thrills me to the core, every time. Every. Single. Time.
New York City.
Who could believe my luck, to have moved so close?
It didn't work out for us to move there (my husband works in the opposite direction and there's oddly no train going to his uni), but we moved as close as we could, while retaining a decent (read: under thirty minute) commute for him.
And I'm thrilled to live so close. Last weekend we went into the City just to play in central park. Maybe we don't go as often as we did the first year we were here. (And maybe we do go more in the fall and spring because look, those are better seasons to be a tourist in NYC.) Maybe we could go more. But there is so much to do here in Jersey, too.
Jersey is pretty amazing, actually. No, I'm not being at all facetious. People bag on New Jersey all the time, but I'm not entirely sure I understand it. Yes, NYC is the greatest city. But not everyone can live there.
I grew up in the burbs (of San Francisco). These Jersey burbs are much more urban than the ones I knew as a kid, more densely populated, to this west coast girl. Each little township has its own flavor, its own history and feel. And while we knew that coming it, it's taken us awhile to explore enough to actually feel those flavors. And I know that to actually grok them will take even longer. We could (and - very strong possibility - will) live here for forty years and only get to know a certain layer of these towns.
(Whereas I lived in the Bay Area for less than twenty years of my life and I can recount with loving detail almost the entire coast of California. Or at least the feeling of it. Which is not so different, one town from another. Except the regional difference between south and north, which I also know deep down in my bones.)
Scatter some of my ashes here, too, love. Near this City that awes me to the core. On the shore that I have come to love with all my being.