I first visited New York in June. And you might have read in the blog posts that followed that I felt there all the things I hoped to feel since the first time I thought of it not just as a place that was but as a place to go. I belonged there like the person said, “One belongs to New York instantly…as much in five minutes as five years.”
I think of it all the time right now since the weather feels the same, since sidewalks are made of the same things here as there, and since it also has people, buildings, and trees – all meshed together in a much bigger jumble then the mesh I find jumbled here. But still.
I want it to be said of me long after I’m gone, “She loved New York like those in the valley love the mountain.” I won’t ever live there, but I’ll visit often and think of it as a friend and remember how it let me in without pretense, condescension, or a fuss.
This, and the fact that one day on Twitter a famous literary agent said that I should subscribe to a certain weekly magazine because it would be the best reading I did all week, led to my delight with this picture. It is a photo of my first ever copy of the New Yorker, a gift subscription I received from a friend.
Tiffany, as in Breakfast at… or @apiphany on twitter, says that we should look for every day to send us some kind of gift. It’s there, sometimes smaller and more unassuming than at other times, not always lottery winnings or birthdays, but always there just the same, if we expect it, look for it, and open our arms when it arrives. For me, that day, it was this – the May 16, 2011, issue of the New Yorker, with a certain terrorist leader somewhat erased on the front.
When I saw it, I knew that day’s gift had come. Only it wasn’t the magazine, so much as the friend who thought of it. Her name is Anna, and they should probably put her name in the saying too. “She loved New York like those in the valley love the mountain. And the mountain wrote to her, the letters to Serenity, care of Anna.”