The drive took way longer than we expected. Not long after we exited the city did we run into the northbound evening traffic we had so ambitiously tried to avoid. But I thought, “Hell. At least I’m out of DC.”
We crawled higher up the column of vehicles in front of us, all friends embarking on a trip for the city that never sleeps for a tasteful, yet raucous, weekend that threw itself together. The rented silver mom van sat all six of us comfortably. We all spoke often of how sweet it would be to own such a van in another life, while making fun of the oldest of us, who indeed was driving this homage to the loss of one’s dignity and/or cajones. We finally passed the dreaded obstacle of all road trips, hitting much sought after open road. After making a few stops along the way, we crept upon New York City as night fell.
The last two times I had been to the city are some of my fondest memories since living in the Northeast. Yet, I’ve always seen New York as an unapproachable beast of concrete, engines, and lights that I could never get acquainted with. However, on this particular trip, I found myself taking on the city with an approach that surprised me. I didn’t feel overwhelmed or stressed about the immensity of the crowds or the possibilities. I took the reins and walked through the city at my own pace. As the weekend progressed, I came to appreciate the company I was in, past that of my friends. I realized that even though things may seem large, intimidating, or just too big to handle, I shouldn’t shy away, but calmly approach it – little by little. Look at me! It took three separate trips to say, “I can handle New York.”
It just goes to show that any experience can facilitate growth, so keep your ears and mind open. Attack that unapproachable beast, one blow at a time.
– Gabriel Oigbokie