June 26th, 2010; A New York State of Mind!

I’m in a New York State of mind today! After a delicious brunch at Public Restaurant and a little bit of unnecessary shopping I set out to Battery Park with my sister and video camera in tow. What an incredibly beautiful city we live in, yet so many of us New Yorkers rarely venture past our own neighborhood. I’m reminded of that Seinfeld episode where Kramer gets lost downtown and ends up on first and first crying out, “How can a street intersect itself? I’m at the apex of the universe!!!” I understand now just how he felt after getting lost in the financial district. There are no numbers there…suddenly all the streets have names and start to zig zag…it’s like I completely fell off the grid into an entirely different city. This “Play Me I’m Yours” 29 Manhattan pianos challenge has forced me to break out of my New York comfort zone and explore some areas of the city that I would typically never go…and despite the annoyance of getting lost, I am deeply grateful to be discovering some of my new favorite New York places! They are reviving my love for this incredibly diverse city.

Today was my first day at the tip of Manhattan. In Battery Park with the statue of liberty behind me, I couldn’t help but get a little choked up! You see, I came to this city from Michigan a few years ago to pursue my dream of being an artist, and sometimes I find myself in a New York moment and it hits me that I actually get to call this city home…and that even though I have a ways to go, I am still in this very moment living my dream! It’s so easy to get caught up in the hustle and to get frustrated when you aren’t in the position that you consider to be “success.” But often times if you just look around and accept each moment for what it is, you will realize that you actually have everything you ever wanted. Now that doesn’t mean that there isn’t more road to travel or higher mountain to climb, but many times as Americans (and almost always at New Yorkers) our view of success is so skewed that we take for granted all that we DO have and neglect to appreciate it because we compare ourselves with those who have more. Here in Battery Park, I discovered that “more” can be the robber of happiness! Every moment of your life is only a memory except for the exact moment that you are living in right now! So relish in that moment, savor it with all of your senses and forget about more! It doesn’t exist and it doesn’t bring happiness. The joy is in the now! Today as the sun was warming my skin, I sat down at a beautiful piano and let myself get swept up in the moment.

Afterward I ran to City Hall Park and to Tribeca Park. I met some sweet travelers at each place, made a few sad attempts at my classical piano roots and relished every second of it. As tired as I am, I will miss these painted pianos! They are reviving my music’s spirit and quenching it’s thirst for inspiration!

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