Rooftop in Brooklyn

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Fast forward and you will hear it: the sound of a million passerby who flow through New York like tiny organisms inside mother earth’s womb. They breathe in the stuffy air of the yellow, orange, and number trains with a hint of weariness as they look at their watches. They see 59th Street, Lincoln Center, Harlem, Bedford, and Flushing with each second passes — then back home again, to point A, where they leave from every morning and come back to every night.

New Yorkers, they call themselves, the bunch that acts like there is nothing in the world that can scare them but their own shadows. New Yorkers, they all believe, are not just who they are, but also who they have become. Their dreams and their goals might be realized, but who they have morphed into is inexplicable to them.

New Yorkers would stare at their own reflections when the train passes through dark tunnels and ask themselves if it is time to move on — from New York, from her tight grip, from her off-putting charm. But like other New Yorkers and the classic New Yorkers, no one can move away from New York because she has a way of sucking you back in. And sometimes, she pulls you in so deep that you forget the reasons why you have come to her in the first place.

But you — like other New Yorkers — love New York. You love her consistent smell of untreated sewage on a hot summer day, of her burnt pretzels and Nuts-for-Nuts, of her black, tar rooftops. You love her consistent scream of Bachata, Merengue, Bollywood, Chinese folk songs, jazz, rap, hip hop, and dubstep. You love her consistent image of downtown Manhattan, of fire escapes, of crowded stadiums, of the greener-on-the-other-side Central Park. You love her irresistibly. You love her indifferently.

You love her because she has given you the key, but not the door.