I love the way this city charms me.
When I first moved here, I would constantly walk down the street and have sort-of epiphany like moments in which I would again realize where I am now and what I'm doing -- that all my work and determination have come to fruition. I've done it. Such moments would result in sense of disbelief usually triggered by the rush of the taxis, the skyscape, and other typically stereotypical things. Those moments have become fewer and farther between but it is the little things that happen now, the smallest of details that remind me why I am here. They are the best rewards for bad days, times when life is hard. It is during these times that the city itself reminds me that as often as it challenges me, as often as it is my source of loneliness, frustration, and sadness, it also strengthens me and is the product of my strength.
Today has been particularly difficult for no particular reason. I went out earlier to grab a sandwich and while I was walking down the street I saw a man praying. I assume he is of Islamic faith as he was positioned on a prayer mat and was bowing repeatedly, placing his head on the ground while others rushed along the sidewalk beside him. This man and others like him, of African nationality presumably, set up various stands in front of the drug store daily. During the winter they sell scarves and hats -- during the summer, sundresses and tank tops. As I walked by I smiled to myself, for the city who has shown me something I wouldn't otherwise see. On my way back from Subway, the man and another were unloading their van for the day. I couldn't help thinking that regardless of one's religious beliefs or lack thereof, there is something to be said when faith is not daunted by daily monotony, drudgery and difficulty.
This city is organic in the way it becomes an entity all its own -- coming to represent different things for different people. For me, as it changes shape in my eyes with each life experience I have beyond the passage of seasons, I am constantly reminded that it is so much more than the big buildings and the bustling hive of bees moving to and fro... It constantly renews. It endures, so I endure.
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