In honor of the fact I am packing up my family and departing my beloved city of Manhattan in just 24 short days, here are 24 things I will miss about living in New York:
1. Central Park before 9 am.
2. The strange old man who dresses as a wizard and hangs out by Bethesda Fountain, and who is unreasonably afraid of Betty.
3. The rare moment when you step into a subway car and realize that it is completely, blessedly empty...and NOT because someone has peed/puked/pooped in it.
4. The "tamale lady." She's the woman who sells homemade tamales out of a metal trash can on the street for $1 a piece. It sounds weird, but you really just have to try it.
5. Levain Bakery brioche.
6. The way there is always some sort of music playing when you exit the train at Union Square--boys beating on trash cans, kids playing guitar, groups of men singing a capella.
7. The bitchy hipster baristas as La Colombe Torrefaction. God, they are so mean.
8. Random acts of kindness from complete strangers. New Yorkers are not rude...they're just in a really big hurry!
9. Grocery shopping at Citarella.
10. The way the sunlight shines across the floor of my apartment during the summer months.
11. Essa-a-Bagel. Pumpernickel. Toasted. Scallion cream cheese.
12. My friends.
13. The fact that even though you're walking down the sidewalk or riding the subway or sitting in the park by yourself, you're never really alone.
14. My crazy dog-sitting neighbor who has, as far as I can tell, worn the same exact outfit every day for the past four years.
15. Taking Alice to the playground.
16. Not having to drive anywhere.
17. The way that Alice can charm even the grumpiest people on the subway into smiling at her.
18. The Chrysler Building at night, as seen from the FDR.
19. Walking down St. Mark's Place, with the loud radios and the Japanese kids lining up for yaki tori and the tourists and the few remaining punks.
20. Ordering Thai, Ethiopian, Afghani, Italian, Southern, Japanese food at any time of day and having it delivered to my door.
21. The way the streets look in the fall when they're covered in yellow and orange leaves.
22. Walking down Spring Street in the early morning.
23. Cappuccino from Si Caffe.
24. The way the sun sets over Houston Street in the summertime.