Photo of the back side of St Patrick's Cathedral on 51st Street and Madison Avenue.
This little gem of a building lies amidst modern high rises. You can see the top of Rockefeller Center in the background. According to Wikipedia, the original site for the building cost $11,000 in 1810. My, how things have changed.
Tonight after drinks celebrating my last day at the office, I encountered a grim reality about living in the sticks (meaning off the island, in Brooklyn). After transferring from one train, I stood on the platform waiting for another for at least thirty minutes. Oh dear.
Gradually, passengers disembarked from other trains, and the platform started looking like a downtown loft party. People stood shlumped in jeans, slightly tipsy and very damp. It was raining moderately in the aboveground world.
My departure today was bittersweet. Everyone was wonderful and there was a great turnout at a swanky bar near the office, where the HR guy picked up the tab. There were hugs and laughter and promises to keep in touch.
When I lived on the Upper West Side, I never waited more than ten minutes for a train. The outer boroughs are another story altogether. Trains thin out after rush hour and on the weekends. Spotting a cab is generally rare. In recent years it's been better, but it's not like Manhattan, where cabs have to duke it out for a fare.
When I first moved to Brooklyn eighteen months ago, I braced myself for a complete life change. Even though Mark lived in Brooklyn, I didn't know what to expect. I felt like I was saying goodbye to civilization.
In actuality, not much changed except my train route. I still feel psychologically close to the city, though I often don't feel like going in. I miss the Upper West Side, but I visit often. I feel I could stay out relatively late in The City and still get home without too much trouble.
It just takes a little longer than it used to.