Going Home.

I don’t belong in NYC.  Maybe when I was in finance, right out of college, single and chasing the life that meant lots of worldly stuff and badly needed vacations.  As a happily married wife, 1,500 miles of distance between Justin and I didn’t feel right even if Justin reminds me it’s to pursue the dream of opening something together.

Is hearing sirens at 3:11 am in the morning going down my street supposed to make me stronger?  Am I supposed to feel alone in a city of 8 million people? Should I worry that I may get mugged on my way home or to work because it happened to a co-worker?  How do I enjoy the smell of piss in a subway on a hot summer day? Can I ever sleep in total silence again without freaking out?

I’ve learned that opening a business requires much sacrifice and patience.  We have already had a lot of practice in replying with regrets.  The weddings we regretfully decline.  The missed baby showers.  The missed happy hours.  The missed birthdays.  The holidays we spent apart from our families.  The UT Football games I only see on ESPN college recap.  I feel like I need a sign that says if you want me/us to come to a life-changing event, it cannot be on a holiday or a weekend.

With that being said, NY has opened a lot of doors and shut some that I never want to open again anyways. I have experience my best falafel pita (Azuri Cafe, not Taim), my first apple picking experience (in Warick), the best almond croissant (Bien Cuit), the best lox + bagel (Russ and Daughters), best meat sweats (Roberta’s), best beach buddies (the Leftwich’s), the best roommates, the best co-workers, many memorable meals, and my first real cravings for alcohol.*  Many of you have flown into NY and made it a point to meet up with me.  (And I have only known you through my Justin.)  Those moments meant a lot to me.  It taught me where home is – where home will be.

Despite all the firsts and bests in NY, there were things that Houston has that I could not live without.  I miss our friends who take the time out of their busy weeks to hang out with Justin and I.  I miss Vietnamese food.  I miss guacamole done right.  I miss cocktails that are more reasonably priced and coffee that is brewed by familiar faces.  I miss a culture of people who truly want to make a difference and don’t have other motives.

Thank you for being so patient with me.  It took a bit of convincing of all the things I miss most about Home, but I suppose distance made this heart grow fonder.  I have so much to share with you all.

* If you have a significant other who seems to have a drinking problem, it’s may not be true.  Sometimes alcohol does help relieve stress and allow one to sleep through the night – something you may be thankful for.  You could say I am an advocate for “proper” use of alcohol.

About Karen Man

a student, teacher, sister, daughter, friend, baker, thrower of dinner parties, jumper at the opportunity to fail, made of unicorn breath and Danish summers, and lover of sunflowers.
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