July 2016 Recap | NYC & NJ

I’m writing this post while sitting on my parents’ porch in South Jersey on a Monday afternoon. No, I’m not on vacation. I’m finally able to reveal something on this blog that many of you already learned if we know each other in real life. This past month has been insane. I resigned from my corporate 9 to 5 (well, 9:15ish to 5:30ish) job in banking in New York City. I stopped working 12 days ago.

After my last day of work, I packed up all my earthly possessions that I hadn’t already donated to Housing Works. I said goodbye to my apartment of four years, my city of seven, and my friends, some of 13 years. Half of my belongings are in my sister’s basement, a quarter are in my childhood bedroom, and the other quarter are in the living room of my parents’ house. I don’t know yet where I’m going to put everything I have home because I am not throwing out my dollhouse or my full Samantha Parkington collection, but I’ll figure it out.

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While I could write a whole post about why I quit my job and left the city, all you need to know is that it was so I could travel. I’m spending the next 10 days “getting that good good South Jersey in my blood”, as my friend Aubrey calls it. She’s right. After seven years of rushing around New York, getting annoyed at subway delays, mean cab drivers, and people who carry golf umbrellas on narrow sidewalks, I’m soaking in the laid-back suburban life – the beach, the ocean, the sun, my parents, and our puppy.

So aside from uprooting my entire life and taking a giant leap into the unknown, what else did I get into this month? Read on.

Posts I Wrote This Month:

I started out the month getting the first dose of that “good good South Jersey” for Fourth of July weekend, and ended the month in the same way. I moved back home on Thursday and my godparents were visiting for the weekend. It has been pretty amazing so far, especially because I finally got to break into some crab legs on Friday evening, like I’ve been wanting to do all summer long.

I hung out with my friends from college in July more than I had in a long time. I know I’ll stay good friends with everyone because we haven’t always all lived in the same city and we made it through those times just fine. After all, some of these people knew me when I thought it was acceptable to wear Reeboks to frat parties. They’re not about to ditch me now.

Nicole and I ate brunch at The Jones, the new Eatery, which was our favorite brunch place when we lived together in Hell’s Kitchen. Nicole also accompanied me on a visit to Tompkins Square Bagels where I had one of my final NYC bagels.

Caitlin and I have a tradition of Tribeca weekday dinners and had our last one at Hank’s Juicy Beef, a new spot with yummy traditional Chicago beef sandwiches. That next weekend I helped her expose a brick wall in her new apartment which was way more fun than I anticipated. I might try to make some money while I’m off doing some construction work. I also got to share ice cream with Jackson, her cute rescue pup.

The Mendy clan and I saw each other a few times, at my going-away picnic in Central Park and on a rooftop on the Upper East Side, for my last rooftop view of the city.

George and Traci win the gold medal among college friends though. It helps that they live right across the avenue from my old apartment, but I saw them for a barbecue dinner at Mighty Quinn’s on the Lower East Side, a home-cooked brunch {by them, not me of course}, the picnic, the rooftop party, and for pizza and packing the night before I left. They’ve also offered me their couch whenever I want it so applause emoji for them.

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My travel buds were huge in my last month in NYC as well, as they’ve been for a while now. I had my last NYC Travel Massive event at Mr. Purple at Hotel Indigo on the Lower East Side – another of my final rooftops. I didn’t realize until then how little access I would have had to the best rooftops in the city without becoming a part of this amazing community. Many of my travel buds made it to my picnic, including Marie, Katie, Jeff, Jen, and Erin – who I hadn’t seen since March (!) because she’s been wandering around the world a ton lately.

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I had quite a few Global Bites without the Flights still on my list by the time I realized I was leaving. Karissa, Katie, and I met up for dinner at a Burmese restaurant called Cafe Mingala, which I wanted to try before I start my traveling this month (spoiler alert?). It was delicious and made me even more excited for my journey. I had another Global Bites situation set up at a Dominican place (El Malecon) on the Upper West side with my local friends from my Fathom trip in March – Kristie, Wendy, and Lisa. We had some appetizers but headed down to Jacob’s Pickles for our main meal (mine was a basket of biscuits) and had a great time catching up. Kater and I ate an amazing dinner of Northern Chinese food at Auntie Guan’s Kitchen 108 and finished up our night with one more  visit to one of my favorites, McSorley’s.

Christie and I explored Red Hook on a lovely Sunday afternoon which I wrote about here. Crabs, beer, key lime pie, and peacocks – what more could you want? We didn’t eat the peacocks, just saw them, for what it’s worth.

I also spent some time soaking in my work friendships with many happy hours and lunches. I’d been more nervous about leaving my job than any other part of this transition. I’ve become extremely close with my team members over the last few years and I’ll miss them a ton. My favorite cocktail was at The Bennett and my favorite lunch was at Seamore’s, a place I’d been talking about for months with one of my closest work buds – where we devoured their famous poké and pesto calamari tacos on a beautiful Friday afternoon.

Leaving New York has been very strange for me, but I know I’ll be back – and for more than to just fly out of JFK at the end of next week. It’s exciting knowing that when I go back the next few times I will be able to do so as a visitor and maybe see the city in a different light, the light that was there when I first moved seven years ago. As Jay-Z and Alicia say, New York’s “big lights will inspire you.” They’ve already inspired me for what’s to come.

xx

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