Friday, March 28, 2003

 

There's almost always someone who can say it better. Thos blogologie post really does come fairly close to describing my recent new york experience:
"As fate would have it, bombs fell on the night before the opening of the CCCCs in Manhattan. The following day, one could not help but note the strong presence of U.S. Military personnel throughout Times Square, patrolling the subways, keeping watch. I am absolutely grateful for the protection these people offer, but I wonder whether we will ever again experience New York without the shadow of attack hovering over the city. My first visits to New York as a teenager were characterized by almost limitless freedom. Nobody was about to stop you from doing anything, and this was not entirely positive, but it was thrilling. Now this spectacular urban landscape is marked by fear. As I watch our various wars unfold, it is hard for me to envision a point somewhere in the future where New York will not feel that it faces the possibility of attack."

New York has a distinctly different feel now than it did when I lived there, in 1994 and 1995, at least in my opinion. People are nicer, but that's not quite the right word. New Yorkers are famous for being rude, but I think that's a myth. People in New York aren't necessarily rude, but rather are kind of self-protective: there are a lot of people living on the little island of Manhattan. Count the other boroughs, and the sea of humanity is overwhelming. The difference for me was that people seemed more involved and engaged, there seemed to be a bit more connection between people on the streets. I won't go as far as to say that we now have a kinder, gentler new york, but I'm not sure it's a place where one could bleed to death on the street while strangers pass only inches away.

It's strange that the difference is palpable in New York, but in D.C. it seems less so. There are new traffic patterns in D.C. and barricades, as well. Even with the sniper attacks and the tractor protest (you have to read about this guy!), things seem less changed there than in new york. Then again, the DC area is my home, so perhaps I have more invested in it not being different.

- posted by laurie @ 3/28/2003 08:18:00 AM
Comments: Post a Comment