The Big City Makes Me Feel Young Again

I always feel young, actually ageless, in New York City. Or any other big city. My spirit feels attuned to the constant buzz, change, madness, and random acts of city kindness. I am not built for country life, although I admire those who are.

Where we live in Florida is beautiful! Warm weather year round, no traffic or parking issues, and a low cost of living. But my area is also low-energy and politically conservative (I know some of you respected readers are conservatives, stay true to you). And even though Florida is full of old people, and New York City is full of young people, I forget about my age when I’m here.

Even my hair feels more energized in the city. That's not always a good thing, but I accept.

Even my hair feels more energized in the city. That’s not always a good thing, but I accept.

So this visit we’re working hard on finding a pied-a-terre in the Villages, one that we can gradually work up to half-time living. All the apartments for sale in our price range are tiny (the hamster can’t turn around comfortably) but we don’t mind that. A vibrant neighborhood, some kind of lively view, no oven needed  : >

I can't find photo hounds just any old place!

I can’t find photo hounds just any old place!

So these are the dreams of my middle-to-old age. I am starting to accept that the striving days are behind me, the personal and creative and intellectual pursuits remain, and the city is my incubator. I’d love to hear about your dreams for retirement (from paid work, not from life), and what kind of pictures you are painting in your mind.

Stay fabulous, and enjoy every sandwich, xo

Visible Monday is taking a week off, as we travel. I’ll be thinking about all the fab Visible Women, and see you next week!!


Some city-style pieces I love:

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  1. That is so exciting Patti! I actually have never been to NYC but always enjoy visiting big cities. However, I get antsy when I don’t see and smell nature and mown lawn parks don’t count for me. I love to go to the culture and restaurants and I love to return to my firefly-filled, starry night with the hoot of owls in the woods. Can’t wait to see your outfit posts in different locales!

  2. Even though I was born and raised in a small town, I dreamed of living in a big city (New York was my dream then). I could never be a country girl either – I thrive on the energy of a big city. I find I need less sleep and have more energy when I am in New York. A tiny apartment in the village would be my idea of a perfect retirement, but given the cost, health care issue, and the current state of politics in the US, it’s a dream that is unlikely to come true. I can live vicariously through you though – hope you find the perfect place.

  3. I am SO happy for you, Patti! Your dream is about to come true! I keep my fingers crossed! Greenwich Village is a special place for me because my favorite poet, Joseph Brodsky, lived there. So I’d say, great choice! 🙂 Though I am sure there are many wonderful, charming little corners of the big city that would suit you, but we need to be where our heart is!

    I am at a different stage of life at this point. In some ways, I am still figuring myself out, and I have a strong feeling that the best is yet to come. I know that I found a perfect place on earth for me (and for us as a family) to live, and I really do not dream of other cities or countries (but I am looking forward for travels to other places…). I love the spot where we live, every time I come back from our little trips, I have this wonderful feeling of home. But I can also see us living in a dozen or so other beautiful places around here. I think it will be still right on the shores of Puget Sound. Like New York City for you, Puget Sound runs through my veins.

    Here is to your happy retirement – from paid job of course, never from life!

  4. Patti, I’m so exited for your part time move! I visited NYC for the first time in March and I can now say, “I get it.” My spirit is like yours– thrives on the city buzz. I’m a stay at home mom so the pictures I’m painting in my head are currently of doing art projects with my boy and camping– two of my favorite things that I’ve put on the back burner because they’re more challenging and exhausting than I can manage right now. Best wishes to you, Sandy, and King!

  5. When i was young, very young, I dreamed of living in NY, but it was never meant to be. Somehow, against my will, I became a small town girl and actually found it suited me. But, I LOVE to visit the city! The energy… The vibrancy…Its electric! You remind me its been far to long since we’ve been!

    • A blend of both – city and country – gives our lives a nice rounded feel, I think. xo

  6. Omg omg — would do cartwheels if I still could; I am hopping up and down hoping you will be a new neighbor! Yes, ovens are not necessary here! And there is something about the energy here that is the perfect incubator…you can step into it, and way from it, at will…
    Don’t rule other neighborhoods…there is a special energy to every neighborhood here, and you would enjoy all of it. Upper east side, turtle bay..
    morning side heights, near Columbus …. lots of options…

    I am retired from paying work due to health issues… and I expect my hubby will work forever… but one never feels stagnant here.
    Enjoy! Thank you for bringing Florida weather here!
    I keep seeing trees in bud, and yes, random acts of kindness here, happens every day…


    • It is incredible – and yes so expensive! We’ve found lots of good little shops that have cheap lunch and dinner. xo

  7. Love how you phrased that Patti… retirement “from paid work, not from life.” For me the key is staying put, in our small waterfront bungalow, near a city where I can go when I choose. I’ve realized that for me big cities are for visiting, and then for leaving to come home to my sunroom, the ducks on the water, and a fire in the wood stove. Although not in summer. Ha.
    P.S. I chuckled at Suzanne’s comment about a farm with chickens, horses and “fifteen pugs.”

  8. Oh Patti, your dream is my dream. Although Haarlem is a lovely town and really not rural or dull, I adore Amsterdam and its liveliness. And I could live in Paris or New York too. Easy.
    But money is limited so no pied-a-terre for us in Amsterdam. Fortunately it is only half an hour to an hour away from our home (door to door). Which I know, is living there in American terms.
    I am so pleased you will be getting a house (no matter how little) in NY. Hope you will find a lovely one.
    My dreams for retirement are blank at the moment. I think I want to continue to work, but differently and less hours.

    • You’re right, a half hour drive is like living there! But i know what you mean – there is the liveliness of being in the heart of a city, xo.

  9. I am not a fan of cities. I’d be a small city gal if I could be. Ideally I’d be on the west coast, Vancouver Island, probably in Victoria which is a nice size city with lots of parks, hiking, decent weather and great places to eat and enjoy “little city” life. It’s really just about my favourite spot I’ve found on earth. I would happily be on a farm on one of the Islands too with about 15 or so pugs and a horse or two and maybe some chickens for fresh eggs.

    I hope you guys find what you’re looking for.

    Enjoy your stay!

    PS…love your blazer! ; P


  10. I have lived in cities and was sure that was the only life for me but I now enjoy a quiet country life. However, I adore visiting the city. I never feel alone in the city even though I don’t know a soul. I love that I can blend in and do my thing with others right next to me. I love how my adrenaline flows with the vibrancy of a city, the cars moving, people talking, speaking different languages, the smells of all the restaurants, the lights, the culture, the feeling of being together but the apart. It’s just cool!

    • Yes, it’s fun to do one’s thing with others right next to you! A free concert tonight at NYU, that’s big fun for us. xo

  11. It would be wonderful if you could find a pied-a-terre in a place which excites and energizes you so much! Although my husband is already retired, and I am not, but when I do I plan to travel a bit. Enjoy your stay in NY. xxx

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