Back in December, I wrote about how I was feeling five months into our move to Brooklyn. And as of last month, we have officially lived here a year. It's the stereotypical experience of I can't believe it's been a year, but it also kind of feels longer. So, in response to the most common question I get asked about our move here, what do I think about Brooklyn (in particular our neighborhood of Park Slope)? One year in - I still love it. Sorry to our Texas friends and families who occasionally ask when we're moving back, sometimes I almost wish I missed Austin, because I miss all of you so much. But unfortunately, I really, really don't miss Austin or our east side house one single bit.
So, what do I love most about our home of one year? Walking. Everywhere. When we were in Europe last spring, I always told Keith that I would fall in love with each new place we went by just walking around. It's the best way to see new things, try the local cuisine (mmm street food!), and hear the language. In Brooklyn, walking everywhere also sometimes means inhaling car fumes and lots of cigarette smoke, holding your breath on trash day, and being startled every time someone honks their horn at another car that didn't accelerate through the light quickly enough. Keith and I both kind of thought after a year, I might be the one to get homesick for Texas. Thankfully, after one year we're both having a difficult time imagining living anywhere else.
Even summertime here feels different than growing up in Texas. Yes it's hot here and really humid, but I don't have the option of an air conditioned car and an air conditioned office. So I push through and look for the shade. It's never such an oppressive heat that the shade doesn't provide some relief, and most days, it all still feels like such an adventure that I don't mind it as much. There are days that I miss the southern hospitality, and sometimes grocery shopping leaves me almost in tears (people really hate when you bring your stroller into some of these smaller stores), but the majority of the time I walk around beaming at everyone and am probably often mistaken for a tourist, because I'm just so dang happy to be here.
One year in, I'm still writing love letters to Brooklyn, and in particular Park Slope, in my head while I push Adeline in the stroller and nod to anyone that actually makes eye contact. I'm already craving fall and trying not to let on how truly sad I am to miss winter here as we head to L.A. in October (I know - I know, any New Yorkers reading this think I'm nuts). I love our tiny apartment and how much less stuff we have, though we've of course managed to fill every shelf and storage nook. I love that we have restaurants and bodegas and bars and wine shops and a pet food store around every corner and less than two minutes away, and if I forgot to buy eggs at the co-op, I can literally run downstairs and out the door to the corner grocer, and be back in five minutes.
I seriously love living here so very much, and feel so blessed and fortunate every single day that this is our life, and that we chose to take this huge adventure with our little family at the exact right time in our lives. Thank you Keith for taking this huge leap with me and not telling me I was completely insane two summers ago when I proposed the idea. And thank you to our family and friends who have visited and have told us how truly happy we seem and reaffirmed that we totally made the right decision. Here's to many, many more years New York!