I’m a New Yorker, fear is my life.
Regardless what anyone (including myself) says, behind the dark veil of sunglasses and subway smoke lives an inescapable fear born the second you step foot into this tragically beautiful concrete jungle.
It’s a fear of failure. A fear of the unknown. A fear of losing face in a cutthroat city of fleeting moments that demand success to the highest degree.
A fear of sleeping through bottomless brunch.
But against that perpetuating fear, exists an even stronger fearlessness. A perceived invincibility simultaneously supplied by this city that lives and breathes within each and every New Yorker–rendering us unstoppable.
This week, through some killer workouts, culinary adventures, and some much needed time to think and write with a little New York holiday magic, I learned to embrace that inevitable fear–using it for me, not against me.
Because fear, from the right perspective, serves as the quintessential ingredient to getting what you want.
Along with a lot of food along the way.
HOW I SWEAT:
With finals behind me (thank god), I suddenly found myself in the most wonderful city on earth with no where to be and all day to get there.
Don’t you worry, though, because with endless seconds comes even more things to do, see and eat.
But first, we sweat. And where else but the workout mecca of crazy wonderful exhaustion, soul cycle.
(If you’re unfamiliar with this incredible place, check out this post)
I jumped into a last minute class at Union Square and submerged myself in an hour of sweat pouring, endorphin building bliss.
700 cals later, needless to say, I was even more ready to eat than per usual. And thankfully for every sweat dripping class, there are 100’s of incredible eats and treats.
Prepare yourselves kids, holiday foods are coming.
WHAT I ATE:
Like any and all days should, mine began with stellar breakfasts at two very different but equally near and dear eateries.
First up, an old but hardly worn out favorite, Chobani Soho.
My obsession for this innovative yogurt bar stems mainly from the deliciously wholesome ingredients and the atmosphere. Without a single worry in the world (besides choosing my yogurt) I spent the entire morning photographing, writing and taking in the unique and indescribable lower Manhattan atmosphere.
Breakfast number two took me to my old stomping grounds to the ever wonderful, The Grey Dog.
This charming cafe in the heart of my beloved Chelsea brings the Brooklyn atmosphere across the river–combining unique and fresh with incredible meals from breakfast to dessert. Not to mention some amazing coffee to wash it all down.
This neighborhood takes up a very special place in my heart–it brought me my first New York apartment, endless love and laughs, but most importantly the mothership for any wine and food lover, The Chelsea Market.
As my blissful New York days drifted to nights, a crisp and cool chill settled in with them, reminding me of the magically wonderful atmosphere that is New York City at Christmas time. So Chris and I indulged some tourism and took on the Union Square Holiday Market and Rockefeller Center.
A few months into our relationship, Chris and I concluded a Sunday stroll across the Brooklyn Bridge. Our relationship still new, I found myself still taking moments to figure him out. As we transitioned from Brooklyn to lower Manhattan, he expressed he only wanted one thing, Wafles and Dinges.
Now these are hardly your average waffles. With options like bacon, ice cream, nutella and endless fruit, they’re more like heaven in a small waffle package. It was late though, and we soon discovered the waffle truck we sought had closed for the evening.
This next part is not an exaggeration. I kid you not, Chris then proceeded to step off the curb, threatening to take himself out via a cab speeding by. An apparently appropriate response to his inability to eat waffles.
I’ve never been more sure I loved someone in my entire life.
Moral of this little story? This week, Chris and I finally got to enjoy those waffles. And it was well worth the threat of death and the wait.
Although it be perhaps the most crowded tourist attraction this time of year, The Rockefeller Ice Rink ranked highest on this trip’s agenda. And although there are dozens of places to fall on my ass ice skating in this city, there’s only one person I want to do it with.
Finally, no trip would be complete without a food fest right? And although the weather outside is frightful, and my beloved Smorgasburg has hibernated for the winter, Berg’n serves as the only acceptable winter replacement.
The makers of Smorgasburg captured and transported the essence of my favorite shore side eats into a warm and wonderful Brooklyn beer hall–complete with every food pop up I could dream of.
Bacon egg + cheese, Ramen Burger
Brisket Slider + Sweet Potato Casserole, Might Quinn’s BBQ
Roasted cauliflower + apples + walnuts, Pizza Moto
Ask me if I’m still full.
Jk, I’m never full.
Beginning this semester four months ago brought every emotion imaginable.
More than anything I feared that leaving this city, even for a moment, meant losing that motivation, that unwavering confidence in who I was and who I want to be. But mostly, losing the truest feeling of happiness I’ve ever known.
I was afraid. I’m still afraid. Terrified, in fact, of the uncertainty that lies ahead, the uncharted and unfamiliar territory the future brings.
But that fear, a little holiday magic, and someone to share the journey with are all the tools I need to survive.
Because even though I never will be without fear of what’s to come, I will always choose happiness.
I will always choose this adventure.
And cannolis. Huge cannolis.
Happy Holidays, kids.
Run far, eat well, drink better,