Sunday, April 11, 2010

Urban Walkabouts

I can liken much of my experience living in NYC to being on a Walkabout, though I didn't realize this before Lost introduced the John Locke storyline, I'll admit. Life imitates art, no? My life has essentially become an Urban Walkabout, learning to survive on my own in the city. Long, solitary walks have become the meat and potatoes (seitan and fennel?) of my sanity.

Lesson #24: Start getting used to doing things alone, and learn to enjoy it if you already don't! This may sound extreme to those without an inclination towards introversion, but that's the beauty of this city - even when you're alone, you're surrounded by millions. Basically, you're never alone in New York.

I think a lot of people are afraid to spend long amounts of time with only their thoughts (and perhaps some good music). Some of my most brilliant thoughts come from random walks where I have no social constructions to worry about and am able to simply observe life being lived.

Plus, what better way to explore the city than setting out on long walks, with maybe this guide, and planning a day to really get to know one neighborhood? Some of my favorite days I've spent in the city were ones when I woke up and decided to go to a random spot on a whim, discovering things I'd never have found otherwise.

Of course many things are more enjoyable with good company, which I'm very lucky to have here. Now that I'm living alone (what perfection!), I appreciate my time with others that much more - yet I understand how closely my sanity is tied to having time alone.


  1. This post perfectly sums up why you've seen more of this city than me in less time. Way to have your fingers on the pulse of the reasons behind everything! My second blurb on the back of your book of philosophy (you'll let me give two right?) will be: Ms. Olszewski would levitate if she weren't afraid of blowing your mind more than she already has.


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  3. Ryan, how about instead of writing a forward or blurb, you just write a book for me? You're a much more talented writer, but I can provide moral support and a constant source of caffeine or something.

  4. Love this post. Can't wait to take a random, on a whim walk with you in June.