Diaries Magazine

Sensory Overload.

Posted on the 01 April 2013 by Ellacoquine @ellacoquine
sensory overload.
I love coming back to the city after long stretches of being away because I'm reminded just how alive, as well as completely nuts this town is. Paris is crazy, but New York serves up a whole different plate of it, galvanizing the intrigue and allure of this iconic town. Wanting to absorb it all, I left my book and iPod in Paris to truly revisit my hometown.
On a subway ride to the East Village from the Upper West Side to meet my younger brother JoJo for potato pancakes at one of our childhood haunts Veselka, several incidents stood out... Forgetting about the wild life that roam brave and free on the New York City subway tracks, I leaped at the sight of four generously-sized rats entertaining themselves with a spirited game of chase, splashing through stagnant oil-stained puddles from rainy days past on the tracks of the 1/9 line. While intently following this fearless joust, I had a friend who was equally interested but not so much by the track-side match, but its spectator: me. To my right, my eyes fell upon a caramel-colored water bug, the size of a hotel mini-bar bottle of booze, looking up at me with its inquisitive antennas. So, rats, I can handle (ish), large cockroaches who can fucking fly? I'd sooner watch several seasons back-to-back of the Real Housewives of Atlanta than be in the presence of these native New Yorkers.
Several times during my trip, I was in earshot of girls on their cell phones. American girls gabbing on the phone is what movies are made of, and given the volume in which they speak, eavesdropping is what I would call a civilian right. Conversations declaring adamant intentions of getting black-out, shit-faced drunk, or encouraging whomever was on the receiving end to just take a few shots to ensure fool-proof intoxication, or debating revisiting a slut phase and that a trial run was in order that evening, I found myself shocked as well as incredibly intrigued. Dialogue such as this perhaps does exist in Paris, but I for one have never overheard French girls going on about how it doesn't count as sex if it doesn't go all the way in. So gross. This sort of delusion that no one is listening in reminded me of my Hollywood waitress days. Us servers conducted more often than not gravely inappropriate conversations as if there was a wall between the coffee shop style counter where customers were faced towards us, eating, a mere two feet away, and our wait station. It was called to our attention by management when Patty, the 43 year old server was overheard complaining about her burning hemorrhoids by James Franco.
My senses were inspired by how much energy New York has, there's always something to look at. How did I take this for granted for so many years? I also forget just how open Americans are, especially New Yorkers, where it takes very little to ignite a conversation with a complete stranger. At the counter at Veselka, my brother and I engaged in pierogi small talk with other patrons, he also managed to make an appointment with our server who overheard that my brother was looking for someone to tune his baby grand piano and it just so happened that this was his side job (well, that, and recording bird sounds).
My trip is coming to a close and will return back to the City of Light with all of my paperwork, another to-do list, spring clothes, maybe a jumpsuit or two, and three tubs of strawberry mist Betty Crocker icing. It was great seeing you New York, we need to do this more often...

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