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Don’t judge by the chapter you walked into.
It’s a new year, so I want you to change one thing. I would say “we,” but I’ve already been working on it the last two years (not that I’ve mastered it yet). Don’...

Why Some Women Don’t Want to Have Kids (And Why the Reason Is Not What You Think It Is)
Yes, I want to write about it (again), because it bothers me. I recently realized I don’t want to have kids (now and maybe ever). And I realized how difficult it is for a woman not only to adm...

You’re Fine
2018 has been a very successful year for me, because I finally understand that I’m completely fine. I just look at myself and I finally see myself. It took me half my life to understand it, bu...

It’s Profound to Be Understood
As Whoopi Goldberg said in her book „If He Says: ‚You complete me’ — Run!”, which I’ve already written about on JLNY some time ago, people tend to mistake love fo...

You’re Always Becoming
Michelle Obama released her book memoir, „Becoming”, and I keep seeing it everywhere in NYC. I haven’t read it yet and now I really want to. Not because I consider Barack Obam...

Drop This Attitude
I just had my best friend Gosia visited me from Chicago a few weeks ago. We spent the whole weekend together excited about each other. We did a few activities, but what was the most important was th...

Is Your Partner’s Skin Color or Country of Origin Relevant At All?
I will answer the titular question right away: „I don’t think so”. And I’m pretty sure I am right. I honestly don’t understand this whole theory about having a partner ...

How To Get the Body You Want
Have you ever said to yourself: “I’m so fat”…? Or “I can’t even look at myself”…?. Or “I will never lose all this weight”…? Or &l...

Accept the challenge
Until now, my favorite sentence was always: “Hope he’ll change after we get married.” (Yeah,  sure, into a pumpkin…) But there is a new contender that I find equally ...

NY Love Story A.D. 2019
I don’t like romantic comedies. And I can tell you why. Once, it used to be my favorite genre, but I grew up since then (a bit). Also — I moved to NY. Romantic comedies just don’t ...

When Was the Last Time Your Journal Embarrassed You?
When was the last time you said to yourself: “This is embarrassing”, and you actually meant yourself…? Well, it just happened to me. I sat down to write about something else and I...

Why It’s Important To Not Look Like Shit
Here is my question: Why do you think it’s a good idea to look like shit at home? Some people put on their worst clothes at home - clothes with holes, stretched out, worn out, old and ugly. (B...

Brooklyn Stories #1

added: 2017-11-13 , category: Living in NY

As I said in my previous post, I decided to move out (I lived in my apartment for the past three years) and start fresh in a new neighborhood (I chose Greenpoint, which became a desired neighborhood now; but more about that soon). You usually know when it’s time for you to change something. You can pretend that you don’t have this gut feeling, but deep down… you just know.

Even though I’m moving by the end of the month, I decided to go to the new place and check it out. It was the first really cold day this fall in NY, so I knew I would end up in a coffee shop quickly. Whenever I’m in Greenpoint, I also go to Peter Pan Donut Bakery. It’s a weird place, pretty old fashioned, and it has this familiar feeling to it. I associate it with warmth. I just wanted to sit there and read a magazine. But it happened to be quite difficult.

I got my coffee and the regulars started coming in. And by the regulars I mean people who come there at least once a day. And since this place is open from 4:30AM (!) it’s not such a big surprise. I met Bob right away, and I sensed that everyone meets Bob. Bob knows everything about everyone and knows exactly the flow of the place. He has Polish roots and is definitely older than me. He’s been living in that neighborhood his whole life. He asked me many questions, and I asked him only a few, since I didn’t quite come there for a conversation. I spent 17 hours at work the day before, so I really didn’t need talking to anyone. Bob wanted me to try a piece of his donut (it was a seasonal one, Apple Cider flavor) to which I wanted to say “No”, as usual (well, we didn’t even know each other), but I took a piece. I wanted to give him a piece of my muffin, but he said he’d already tried it (of course he had). And suddenly I immersed myself into the whole vibe of the place. That kind of vibe is something you rarely experience in NY anymore.

A couple of friends came for a coffee and a  sandwich and started doing the NYT crossword. Apparently Bob helped them the last time they were there, so they asked him to help them again. Two other ladies, also regulars, who just walked in, started helping out as well. The gentleman (with a hole in his t-shirt), who was sitting by himself and just finished his bagel with eggs and was just listening and looking around until now, suddenly also spoke up. He helped them out with one word so they handed him the newspaper. Suddenly six people were involved in that crossword. And I was just sitting and smiling (I wasn’t even paying attention to the words they were looking for, because I enjoyed the whole experience in itself). Another regular came in and told me he enjoys reading books. He said: “I don’t read as fast as I used to, but I’m happy I still can see”. Bob said everyone loves books at that place. I spent two hours there, most of the time chatting with Bob. I put my phone deep into my bag.

I constantly meet new people in NY and my friends ask me how I do that. First of all – I go out excited for a new day and for people I can encounter. I’m just open and I just stopped judging people. I said it a few times already – you never know who you’d meet in NY, who are you talking to, and – the most important one – what this person is going through in their life. Maybe they need a few minutes of conversation with you? And maybe you are the one who actually needs this conversation? People also talk to me, because I see them (literally); I am not glued to my phone all the time. When I go to a coffee shop, I just put it down. I focus on experiencing the moment. Life is happening outside of your phone and it’s way more fascinating than you think. Try it yourself.

[With this post, I start my new series “Brooklyn Stories”. I want to share with you the stories and the people I would meet in my new neighborhood. And I believe I will have many golden nuggets for you, so stay tuned.]



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