-- --

Saturday, March 8, 2008

On Living In The Sticks, In Brooklyn

St Patrick's Cathedral
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.


oldmanlincoln said...

Can I imagine the cost that went into the construction of this? No. It must have been a lot of money back in those days for the congregation to come up with. Wow. An impressive photo.

Kitty said...

Hallo Lincoln!
Your comment provoked me to figure out which church this is, and it turns out to be St. Patrick's, a well known Catholic landmark.

I was viewing the cathedral from the back, which is not as lavish as the front facade. There are two plain (though beautiful) buildings on either side of a more ornate building. It is really beautiful.

fishwithoutbicycle said...

My friend Nigel is ALWAYS complaining about the F train :-)

Have a lovely weekend and good luck with the new job Kitty. Do you start on Monday or are you taking some time off first?

Kitty said...

lol, Fish, this was the R train, which you'd think would be okay. Nope.

I have a week off before starting. I wish I'd planned having a month off. Have a good weekend!!

Spandrel Studios said...

Having that time in between jobs is really important. I've never understood people who leaped from one job to the next with barely a weekend in between!

Best of luck with your new venture, Kitty!

Tammy said...

What a beautiful church! You're going to do great at your new job!!! :o)

Kitty said...

thanks Spandrel!
Have a great weekend!!

hi Tammy
yes, it's a cool building. I'll have to take photos of the front next time.
thanks dear and have a great weekend!

Ha Ha Sound said...

What happened? Did you get a new job?

And as for the trains, I'll be in the same boat as you as of May.

Kitty said...

hey Ha Ha
yeah, I got a job a while back and am finally leaving.

Welcome to Brooklyn!
Are you moving to good ole Greenpoint?

Andrea said...

I bit late (!!) but congrats on the new job. Not so new anymore, and I don't know how it worked out in the end, I am yet to read that :-)

Last days at a jobs are always bittersweet I find. You kind of forget why you wanted to change so much, all the things you disliked about your old job and all you can concentrate on is how much fun you are having with the colleagues you are leaving behind at your leaving do. But there is a reason for wanting the change and so leaving is usually the right choice.

Hopefully the transition went well, look forward to reading about it.

Andrea x

Kitty said...

Thank you dear Andrea!

I do agree. There's also the mystery of what the future job holds, and the fear that it might not be so great.

One always misses the people, of course. The people make the difference and they are what keep me rooted in any job.

Unfortunately I feel I can't write too much about my current job, partly because I feel such allegiance to my boss, and partly because it's so stable and devoid of drama that I would bore you all. lol.