Thursday, 25 November 2010
One month ago I set sail for new and foreign shores. I arrived and it instantly felt familiar and natural. It felt right to be in New York. When I walk the streets I knew I'd done something I wouldn't regret. Today is one month on from that day, and it doesn't feel much different. The difference is that I have lived here and worked here. There are challenges but all in all the highs have far outweighed any potential lows. Last weekend was a big high.
Last Thursday Koen, my buddy from the London office, came over to stay the weekend. If you know Koen then you will know this weekend was not going to be a quiet affair. It wasn't by a long shot. On the Friday I met him I was with my work mates and we went for a few pints, exactly a few and a shot to be honest. That was our warm up! Then we went to the Kate Nash gig at Terminal 5. Being at that gig was strange and it evoked feelings I haven't felt since 5 years ago when I used to hang with Kate and friends and I saw her become famous. It was fun to see and Kate was awesome, she reminded me of Karen O live. After the gig we all went to an underground "secret" bar in the East Village. It's considered secret because the entrance is through a Take Away Pizza and then through a door at the back. We didn't go through that entrance though, we went round the side. We had fun, I caught up with some of the people I hadn't crossed paths with in the best part of 5 years and we got horrendously drunk. Whiskey was my go go that night. However a cool thing about this bar is not that I hung out with a popstar there or that you need to go through a pizza place to get in. No, it's cool because it's literally above my new apartment.
My new apartment is amazing. Don't get me wrong it's not modern, it's not spacious, it's not quiet, there's no garden, and there's not artwork adorning the walls by Bacon and Warhol. It's amazing because the people are awesome, the location is unbelievable, my window overlooks a park, that I am directly above a mural of Joe Strummer, and because it's above cool bars that members of todays music scene hang out. Not bad for my first new apartment.
The day after the night before and I felt like I had been hit by an Irish truck. The whiskey was reminding me why we fell out almost a year and a half ago and he was kicking my front teeth in whilst punching my stomach. It was a cruel way to begin the day but Koen and I had to go out and explore. So after a quick wash and change and we headed into the Jungle.
I decided we'd go to The Smile, a cafe I saw in Wallpaper guide book - a guidebook that's a little too design for most but has a couple of gems. The food was awesome and even though the Irish Whiskey god of hate was still kicking me I enjoyed it. Koen and I left with a smile and decided to go for a walk. We headed to Williamsburg to meet our friend Paul who lives there.
Williamsburg is like Shoreditch with a hard on. In one afternoon I felt like I'd just walked into the opening scene of Nathan Barley (note: if you're American and know a production company then I recommended doing a Williamsburg version of the Barley). I like the area and the bars and all that but some of the people can fuck off. I said to my colleague in London once that there's a fine line between being cool and being a wanker. Well i've seen a lot of wankers over there. That said Paul is a good Captain for sailing through the wankness and making it to decent shores. So with his guidance we had a good few drinks and a great dinner at Rye - check the pork belly sandwich, incredible! After the food I was done and headed home leaving Koen and Paul to explore Williamsburg.
The next day I woke up with no Belgian friend in the apartment. I thought nothing of it seeing as it's Koen and it's normal for him to go missing for a day. Anyway it got to the afternoon and he's still gone but alas it is Koen. At 3pm he comes back and crashes out, it had been a long drinking day/night/morning. After that we hit the local Thai restaurant, Room Service. It was fantastic and the closest thing I've come to Thai food since Thailand.
So that was the one month weekend celebration.. ish. Today is the one month of being a resident in NYC and I am moving into my apartment, going to a thanksgiving in Harlem, and expecting the arrival of two more guests from London. Who knows what this weekend could bring ;-)