I'm from Washington, D.C., so when I first arrived in New York City 10 months ago, I wanted to experience the great stuff that's happening here.
I had two weeks to find a place before relocating for my new job, and I took a place on 107th Street and Columbus Avenue sight unseen, after finding it on Craigslist.
Unfortunately, l didn't know that the neighborhood wasn't really what I was looking for. I only know that now, after moving last month into an apartment with a parkside view of Tompkins Square Park.
It feels like I'm finally actually living in New York City.
When I lived in Manhattan Valley, everything felt so far away. Also, it seems like everyone in the Valley/on the Upper West Side is either twice my age or has lived in that neighborhood for their entire lives and never leaves their block!
Sure there was plenty for a 25-year-old like me to do up there--I'm a runner and cyclist and I do miss Central Park and I did like the Lion's Head Tavern and the beer garden on 120th Street--but it just didn't give me the right feel.
Now that I'm living in the East Village, I walk everywhere.
In the last two weeks, I walked 10 miles just exploring. I have a huge list of restaurants I want to eat in--I love Morandi, Brunch at Essex and the Sunburnt Cow--and there's so much to do here.
I've also saved a ton of money by making this move. Let's take cabs, for example. When I lived uptown, I always went out downtown and was spending between $300 and $500 per month on cabs.
And, while my apartment is a bit more expensive ($2,400) than my last one ($2,000), my current place is three times the size of the old one and has a great park view.
It's funny. I'm actually glad that I didn't make the move sooner. I appreciate what I have so much more now. I love that I'm surrounded by my peers now--it's so much better than eating dinner uptown in places that are jam-packed with strollers and diaper bags!