When I was last in New York I had both an amazing and shitty time. Amazing because it was New York and shitty because I was in a frustrating relationship with a crazy French guy. As adorable as he was, he was driving me nuts. And most importantly I didn’t like who I was in that scenario. I had exit to the left… and I did, before I returned home.
I was far from family and friends in a big city where if you are not equipped to deal with its concrete slaps in the face, then you better get the fuck out and go back home. I was somewhere in between. I was in love with New York City but also craving Australia. This was a revelation, one of those good lessons.
While in New York staying with a good friend in Astoria, my best friend sent me the lyrics to a song called Cycles in between emails to one another about the situation I was in. I looked up the song on Youtube and played the Frank Sinatra version and felt connected to a song in that meaningful manner that reminds you of a particular time and place. This song reminds me of the painful decisions I made, the small victories and the bittersweet losses. It reminds of New York, it made me understand the power of the Sinatra croon and the gift in surrendering and moving on.
CYCLES – Frank Sinatra
So I’m down and so I’m out / But so are many others / So I feel like tryin’ to hide / My head ‘neath these covers / Life is like the seasons / After winter comes the spring / So I’ll keep this smile awhile / And see what tomorrow brings / I’ve been told and I believe / That life is meant for liven’ / And even when my chips are low / There’s still some left for given’ / I’ve been many places / Maybe not as far as you / So I think I’ll stay awhile / And see if some dreams come true / There isn’t much that I have learned / Through all my foolish years / Except that life keeps runnin’ in cycles / First there’s laughter, then those tears / But I’ll keep my head up high / Although I’m kinda tired / My gal just up and left last week / Friday I got fired / You know it’s almost funny / But things could get worse than now / So I’ll keep on tryin’ to sing / But please, just don’t ask me how
Manhattan, one of Woody Allen’s romantic postcards of New York City is also one of his finest films. Starring Allen himself alongside the brilliant Diane Keaton and Meryl Streep in a small role and the luminescent Mariel Hemmingway, it is a film about love in the big city that has become classic. Filmed in black and white, Allen shamelessly romanticized the city using all the obvious images, places and scenes but it never feels trite.
I sit on the edge of a pool in upstate New York. I have an ‘inspiring’ book in my hands and I put it aside close my eyes and look up at the sun. This is enough. This is all I need. He tells me he is stepping out for a while to get a few things. I say ‘ok’ and stay put. When he gets back he…