A very New York sort of day


This morning at the subway turnstile I realized that my Metrocard had expired, and since I have so little time left in New York I renewed it with a weekly unlimited pass instead of my usual monthly one. It was kind of bittersweet, kind of shocking, and kind of awesome.

After my downtown meeting directly across the street from the Woolworth Building, I took a moment to walk casually past the “no tourists beyond this point” sign and gawk at the spectacular lobby. (Had anyone stopped me I would have said, “Humph, I’m no tourist!”) Even though it’s one of the world’s first skyscrapers, the Woolworth Building had never been on my NYC bucket list, but after seeing it in person I now know it should have been.

My next order of business was in Midtown and a huge pain, but when I was finally done and waiting for the subway at Grand Central, the finale of a pretty delightful song by the speakeasy-style band on the platform harmonized perfectly with the sound of the train pulling into the station.

I thought, you will get none of this in Senegal.

And yet.

Today I received information about the family I will be staying with in Dakar for about two months. The homestay was arranged by the language-learning center where I’ll be doing 40 hours of one-on-one lessons over two weeks. I had found and loved the sound of this particular program two years ago when I first started looking into immersion possibilities in Senegal, and very (very, very) coincidentally, my newish-at-the-time friend found and chose the same program when she decided to do her own French immersion last summer. She loved it and especially loved her host family so I requested them as well, and today I found out that they are free, and that’s where I’ll be staying.

Yes, I’ll be giving up skyscrapers and subway symphonies for awhile. But soon I’ll be feasting my eyes and ears on all new sights and sounds, and I am so excited about that.

[Photo of Woolworth Building lobby: Christ-ophile]