I arrived in New York City yesterday and was immediately reminded why this is my favorite place in the world. The familiar sights and sounds energized me the moment I stepped from the train, and I felt my pace - and pulse - immediately quicken. New York is fast. Don't-even-try-if-you-can't-keep-up fast. Don't-stop-now-there-is-too-much-to-see fast. My kind of fast.
But traveling with a one year old creates an entirely new dynamic. Instead of immediately hailing a cab to zip downtown for an afternoon yoga class or glass of wine, I headed straight to the hotel to ensure the crib we reserved was in place. Rather than virtually browsing the menu at the newest "it" restaurant and brainstorming destinations for a nightcap, I reviewed room service dessert options.
And at 2:00pm this afternoon, rather than anticipating the next destination on a packed agenda, I left my folks at Madison Square Garden to enjoy the afternoon game and returned to the room to put the babe down for her afternoon nap.
While the new rhythm lacks a certain glamor I have always associated with the Big Apple, I have no less love for my old friend. The wide sidewalks of midtown are quite ideal for a stroller. And New Yorkers have never seemed more friendly than when smiling at a tiny tourist.
It is amazing what you notice when you walk at a baby's stutter-step pace: a city that couldn't be more familiar or beloved has nooks and crannies I never paused long enough to see - let alone appreciate. Slowing down has value on many levels. What might you see differently if you took your foot off the gas pedal for a moment?