veen in new york: the first few months.

i’m not sure yet how i’m going to post about life in new york on here. in the past i highlighted places under the “best in bangalore” and “marvelous memphis” umbrellas, but at present i don’t have a catchy series name for new york and i am also in the mood for something different.

in the meantime, while i continue to think about that, i figured i could highlight a few overall ups and downs of my first few months in my new city.


living one neighborhood over from a best friend. in a city like new york it’s common to have friends and family spread across all the boroughs, so it’s practically a miracle how close maggie and i live to one another. we are 30 minutes by train or a 45-minute walk away, and it has been so nice to be so close and to enjoy impromptu coworking days and momo dinners.

walking the boardwalk. brooklyn, new york. february 2022.

walking! i mentioned in my why new york post that walkability was a huge factor for me when considering my next move, and i love how walkable my new neighborhood is. everything i need is within a 15-minute walk from my apartment, and i have loved getting out and exploring. i can count on one hand the number of days i’ve not met my step goal.

love these friends. boston, massachusetts. march 2022.

trips to cleveland and boston. i love love love living in close regional proximity to so many friends and how easy it is to see people. with access to direct flights [or trains] and easy drives, i am enjoying having new options for getting to my people.

exploring chinatown. new york, new york. february 2022.

visits from friends. i have already had visits from 5 friends, ranging in duration from 24 hours to 5 days, and it has been fun being able to show people around my neighborhood and to explore the city with them. excited for upcoming visits from katie, jen, and jeremy over the next few months as well!

poser. brooklyn, new york. february 2022.

public transit. another of the big reasons i wanted to move here. apart from a visit to westchester, my road trip to boston, and moving my car on street cleaning days, i have gotten everywhere else either by bus or subway or on foot. it’s so nice to be able to listen to a podcast or read my book and leave the logistics to someone else.

loved exploring with these two. new york, new york. february 2022.

meeting new people. it’s been fun to meet new people and make new friends. i am very grateful to the people who have absorbed me into their existing groups, and i am also grateful for the new connections i have made since moving [including a few neighborhood friends!].

sunset view from my neighborhood park. astoria, new york. march 2022.

my neighborhood. as i have said to anyone who will listen, i have been lucky enough to stay in many neighborhoods across manhattan, brooklyn, and queens, and i contend that astoria might be my favorite. i love the neighborhood feel of where i live and also the convenience of being able to opt in to the hustle and bustle as and when i want. i love all the greek restaurants and my neighborhood bar and that the guys in one of the bodegas already recognize me. i love how close i am to the subway and the bus but also how easily i can get out of the city when i want.

tank and the bangas. new york, new york. march 2022.

so many events! i have to pace myself, because there are so many things happening every day and it’s impossible to do it all. in two months i’ve been to a broadway show, a play, a concert, two dance performances, an event space open house, a gallery show, and a comedy show, and i already have plans for at least 4 more events this month.


traditional stop for all visitors. astoria, new york. march 2022.

the great bagel slicing incident of 2022. on my first weekend in town i cut a giant gash in my thumb while slicing a bagel. i probably should have gotten stitches, but i couldn’t leave the apartment because i was waiting on a guy who was coming to do some repairs. by the time he came, finished his work, and left, it had been too long so instead of stitches they had to glue it back together. it’s still tender from time to time, but i figure it cements my status as a new yorker.

these made me happy. astoria, new york. march 2022.

navigating parking and street cleaning days. there is an art to it that i am still figuring out, and every once in a while i get bamboozled by a fire hydran, but i’ll get there. it’s a real life logic puzzle, and it’s a constant adventure.

very excited about my milkshake. brooklyn, new york. february 2022.

all the rules surround trash and recycling pickup. it’s so strict that if sanitation workers see something in a regular trash bag that they think should have been recycled, they’ll leave the entire bag on the street or else take it and then fine the building owner. everything has a specific-colored bag in which it needs to be put, and different things get picked up on different days. this is another one of those things that i will figure out with time, but goodness is it complicated.

my neighborhood has some great art. astoria, new york. march 2022.

laundry. very privileged problem, but aside from my 6 months in bombay, i have never not had laundry access in my building. is it cool that i can take my laundry across the street and have someone else do it for me? absolutely. but in reality i kind of miss doing my own laundry and am going to start doing it myself soon.

faves. new york, new york. february 2022.

not enough sleep. this one is totally on me. between visitors and events and basketball games and wanting to soak up that nyc life, i have stayed up later than i should on too many occasions. one of my goals for the next few months is to get that back in check.

as you can see, the pros far outweigh the cons. i fully recognize that i am still in the honeymoon phase, but i continue to be very happy about this move.


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