I’m writing this while walking home tonight, dressed in a suit and tie, cool breeze in my face, listening to music… It occurs to me:

I’m home.

I’m less than two weeks away from celebrating one year of living in New York, and I am increasingly convinced that it was the right move for me. Sure, it’s expensive, and I worry about bills frequently. Yes, I miss my friends in Charlotte, and no, I don’t see my NYC friends enough.

Yes, sometimes I’m lonely. And I have doubts from time to time.

But then within a few days, I’ll be walking the dogs and some old immigrant woman will smile cheerfully at me on the street. Or the young Colombian guy from the Thai restaurant will show up at the door with dinner, barely speaking enough English to thank me for giving him a tip. Or I’ll go to some work or social event and meet dozens of new people.

Or my favorite: I’ll be in a taxi on the way home from a long night out (which is very rare, believe it or not) and I’ll smile softly to myself as we cruise over the Queensboro bridge.

These things remind me that I’m in a phenomenal city full of wonders, of diverse people and fabulous places, of scrumptious food and fantastic adventure. I wake up each day and breathe New York City air, and no matter what you might say about it, it smells like home.

I’m home.

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