I only have a handful of days left in New York before I fly to Dakar in the new year. Yesterday I had a doctor’s appointment in the Woolworth Building (above) and I realized that the last time I was there – nearly three year ago – was also right before leaving for Dakar.
Things are different now. I’m not going indefinitely this time, or even for long enough to count it as a relocation. I’ll just spend two or three months there for work, and then I’ll come back. At this point in my life, that’s the perfect set-up.
So, I don’t have any of the bittersweet preemptive nostalgia for the city that I had last time around. Still, since the Woolworth Building reminded me of my imminent departure, and since I was just a couple of blocks away from a stunning hotel, I decided to have an espresso at the hotel bar instead of at the midtown coffee shop across from work.
On my way, I passed another gorgeous building that I swear I’ve never seen before… though in reality I must have.
Also this beautiful ghost signage.
And here’s my destination, the Beekman Hotel.
I have been to both the hotel’s bar and its restaurant before, but I’d never been inside Augustine, its French-style bistro. It was just as stunning as the rest of the place.
I had the best $6 espresso I’ve ever had, both because I’ve never paid $6 for an espresso before and because it was delicious, and then I passed other lovely buildings I’ve never considered for long enough, on my way back to the subway and my everyday office life.
The whole detour lasted maybe forty minutes but made me feel a certain sense of wonder the rest of the day.
Grab those little moments to be a tourist in your own city, people! It has a disproportionately beneficial effect on your mental health.