as a fan of bob dylan, i've been reading positively 4th street and it just happened to have several important nyc references that got me thinking about the opportunity to physically be in a space where some of these great people who've inspired me the most found their inspiration! in addition, folks like jack kerouac have always fascinated me because of a profound connection i feel with the philosophies of the beatniks of that generation... and therefore, it was nothing less than natural for me to be intrigued with the historical significance of places where their stories originated.
for example... greenwhich village, washington square, cafe wha and other popular venues of that era were where so many of these talented people frequented during the start of their incredible careers during a time that eventually came to shape an entire subculture. for me, i loved the idea of being able to literally visit and occupy the same spaces they had at one time - and if only for a second, live vicariously through the ideologies that carry their legacy.
other places to visit were more common, like walking through time square, taking a horse drawn carriage ride through central park, strolling the bustling streets of chinatown, taking the staten island ferry out to view the statue of liberty, walking the coney island pier - also the set from one of my favorite films of all time, requiem for a dream - 30 rock, and several other iconic buildings, etc. mission: accomplished!
when all was said and done though, i was glad to be back home! don't get me wrong, i love nyc and hope to return throughout my lifetime with different opportunities to zoom in my experiences on more specific things to do, but i don't know if i could ever live there long-term. the shortage of space, lack of green and just the socioeconomic divide from the homeless to the wealthy in that small of area just makes me a little sad to see how different that part of the country is from my homegrown roots in the midwest. here, our tallest building is 4 stories vs. the empire state building. and the people are just kinder. it's not that i mind the fast-paced big city life, it's just that i came back with the realization that i am truly a small town girl at heart! and damn proud of it.