This is a compilation of photos I decided to take on my visit to my friend’s place in Alphabet City. I noticed how every block or corner of New York City tells a different story. There’s rich history here, no matter how contemporary the buildings become. And the people here also seem very special, in their own ways.
I sound like a tourist now. I think that’s what the city is, a place full of people who are wondering around like tourists in the hustle and bustle. Even if you’ve lived here your whole life, or have been working here for years, weren’t there times when you stopped to gaze around your surroundings for a few minutes to take in what remains of what you remember? What are you awed by now? Have you noticed any changes in the last few years, or even decades, that you’ve lived here?
I’ve always loved human storytelling entailing journalism/reporting. And I love the city because there are ample opportunities to do so. It’s the home of Humans of New York; it’s the turf of Bill Cunningham.
New York is a city of immigrants built from the ground up. Now, the faces may be younger, more hip, or even unrecognizably diverse. You could be lamenting the change, embracing it, or even be indifferent about it. There is not a unified opinion for or against change here in the city.
There are so many unique people painting the city with their footprints. It’s amazing to see how the most outrageous outfits go unnoticed here. Blue hair, red hair, underwear. There’s even a day dedicated to wearing just underwear in the subway. Even wearing a tailored suit to class – at NYU – is a norm, something that students don’t question. They pass glances and go, “S/he has a presentation in her/his class today.” Or, “Case competitions are the worst. Godspeed.” Maybe even this shared sentiment: “Interviews… I should be applying to internships.”
Catcalling inevitably ensues if a girl or woman passes by a group of men sitting mindlessly on the streets. They look like they have nothing to do. Their time could be spent not opening their mouths and spitting out degrading – and what is often disgusting – phrases to women who want to be left alone. But there they go. Often times, they have a smirk on their faces, almost looking as if they expect a gracious thank you, or an acknowledgement. In a way, I don’t know if they have a clue as to what they do is not acceptable. I wonder what their mothers, girlfriends, sisters, or even daughters think of them if they see their men acting this way to strangers.
As there are good things, there are bad things. Newton’s third law. Just kidding. Well, not exactly, but metaphorically speaking, with every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. As in, to say: the world is seemingly run in black and white, dichotomous ways.
Taylor Swift’s lyrics from “Welcome to New York” says, “Welcome to New York, it’s been waiting for you.” I disagree. New York hasn’t been waiting for us. It’s ever-changing. No matter when you get here, numerous other people are already here, imprinting their love, their hopes, their frustrations and angers, many disappointments, but most importantly, a lot of personal triumphs – no matter how small or big.
I wonder what New York will look like in 10 years. Or even 20! I’ll have to wait and see. Time never breaks its promise on moving forward, whether we like it to or not.
P.S. That lavender building is my favorite! It’s so vibrant and its personality speaks for itself.