fresh no ads
New York, New York |


New York, New York

MILLINER MUSINGS - Mich L. Dulce - The Philippine Star

I’ve just relocated to New York City. Not permanently, just for a few months while I do work with a milliner.

I’ve lived here before, shortly after I graduated from college. I studied at FIT and lived in my cousin’s flat in the Upper West Side. While that gave me a bit of familiarity with the city, along with a two week trip I do every spring, this feels like the first time I’ve had to actively look for my accommodations.

Sublet hunting. It’s a bitch.

While my Death By Tampon bandmate Lara has kindly offered her room for me to stay in until April as she is away, I’ve decided to try and find a place of my own immediately.  Maybe it’s excitement at settling in, or maybe it’s just maturity — the need to have your own space, one that you chose and really like that you can call your own.  While, when I was younger, I would have gladly house-hopped and couch-surfed my way for three months, I suddenly feel the need to just find a place.

It’s not easy here. I was surprised to find out that a decent, spacious room near my work in Soho is close to impossible to find, and really, really expensive. What I would pay for a room here is an area comparable to Shoreditch, where I normally live in London, at nearly double the cost, and half as big as what it would get me in London. I was honestly shocked.

I’ve never really been a big fan of New York. Since I was young, I’ve always been about London, the United Kingdom, or even just Europe. Most people mock me when I say this, but I think New York looks like Greenhills, the Unimart area, or sometimes the Wilson area. Some people, like Cecile van Straten, get what I mean though. You know: industrial. Gray. The wide streets and industrial areas make me feel extremely paranoid. That and the amount of people in those black coats that make you look like a walking sleeping bag. I don’t think I’ve seen so many of them in my life; in London fur is a more popular way of keeping warm… that or layers of Uniqlo heat tech.

The first day I was here, I went into panic mode. I can’t explain it, but each time I cross the pond, I feel like I’m in a completely different world despite me visiting this city quite often. As pretentious as it may sound, it’s almost like culture shock. I think the way the city looks makes it feel harsher here, even when the people here are kind and warm once you start to speak to them. My paranoia was not helped by my friend Ida who I went to visit in Bushwick my first night in, who told me to go home before 10 p.m. “just to be safe.” I trekked to the subway with a scarf around my head to try and look inconspicuous (forgetting that I was wearing silver platform shoes and a peach-colored furcoat) and mind conditioned myself for my eight-block walk in deep Bushwick by repeating “No one died in Girls, no one died in Girls...” in my head while walking as fast as I could.  (If you aren’t familiar with Girls, it’s the HBO television series set in Bushwick, Brooklyn.)

After viewing about 15 rooms, I ended up settling on a loft share in Williamsburg which I will move into this weekend.  The room is small, with a lofted bed. My mom did not approve when I told her about it, as she was concerned about me falling off the bed as I walk in my sleep, but I decided to take that risk based on my major househunting priorities: good location, roommates I’d get along with (my “landlady” deals vintage and sews — perfect!), elevator (I can’t deal with walk-ups, I have way too much stuff), space for my bike and biking proximity from work, and to live on a non-industrial-looking street (fortunately the flat I chose is surrounded by brownstone buildings, yay!). It was the only flat among the 15 that I really felt like a place I could live in and so that risk of sleepwalking just didn’t seem valid anymore. Just knowing I get to move there already makes New York feel a little bit more like home — hell, I even got one of those puffy jackets, but only to wear under my peach fur. Baby steps.

vuukle comment











Are you sure you want to log out?
Login is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

Get Updated:

Signup for the News Round now

or sign in with