Saturday, May 05, 2007

You're Out of the Woods...

"Manhattan Skyline - New York City" copyright Ian Britton.
Date: Oct 10, 2001 2:11:54 PM

Those buildings over there on the left are the World Financial Center in lower Manhattan. The three "glass" plated ones are the anchor tenants there. The one on the left, closest to the camera, is the home of Merrill Lynch. To the right is the Oppenheimer Capital building, and the one behind Merrill Lynch, and slightly taller, is the American Express Building. I worked in that building from 1986 until 1992.

What you don't see is what used to be behind these buildings, across the West Side Highway. I refer of course to the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center. This picture was taken a month after they were destroyed by terrorists, from the New Jersey side of the Hudson.

I have a lot of memories of that area. Prior to 1986 my old firm (Lehman Brothers and before that, Shearson American Express), had it's block trading department on the 104th floor of the South Tower (the one that was hit 2nd and collapsed first). I worked there from 1983 to 1986, before we moved across the street to the (then) new AMEX building.

I still work in the city but I no longer live there. I left it, just as my friend Bev left San Francisco/Berkeley for Davis, a long time ago. Central New Jersey is my home now, and I love it here.

Occasionally, such as today, I return to the city on a Saturday to get a haircut (like Bev's husband Walt, who still drives 80 miles to see his dentist [see Bev's Blog for today HERE], I still go to NY to get my haircut... and to see my dentist) and to see a show (today it's "Howard Katz" starring Alfred Molina who played Doctor Ock, the villain in the LAST Spiderman movie) and then to kill some time at Bloomingdale's, looking at crap I can't afford to buy in order impress people I don't really like, and then to have dinner with a new friend of mine and his wife, out in the glorious outer boro of Queens. ("outer boro" NYese for "Mars.")

I used to think that I'd miss my old life in New York. The one where I made tons of money, ate in swell restaurants, wore really nice clothes, flew around to wherever I wanted and wreaked whatever havoc I thought I could get away with.

But I don't.

Oh, it had it's moments.

But at the end, they were only bad ones.

And after 9/11, there wasn't anything left there for me. It was like the terrorists had wiped out any last "fond" memories I might have had of the place.

Now, it's just a place. Not glamorous, not exciting, not fabulous. It's just New York.

No comments: