New York came calling (again), and I answered.
It was the coolest thing: from out of nowhere, I started seeing New York, all over the place. On the radio, on T-shirts, in random books and on signs -- often times back-to-back, such as hearing "New York" in a song precisely as, say, a car with a NY Giants bumper sticker cut me off. I even felt New York; on my last visit, I'd been left with a certain, all-over "imprint" of the city, a keenly-felt "energy," and, suddenly, in the middle of September, I was feeling this distinctive "groove," coinciding with the onslaught of NY mentions in my daily life.
I knew I had to go back, and so I did.
However, this time was a bit different: instead of staying in a Times Square high-rise hotel, the only room I could get within my window of opportunity was a Brooklyn hostel. And, what a difference. It was still New York, certainly, that much was for sure; but Brooklyn is a whole other ballgame than Manhattan, especially in the Bushwick neighborhood that housed my "hostel." Note the quotations, because this "hostel" turned out to be, rather, just a simple townhouse in an unfriendly neighborhood. I'll refrain from elaborating on the shortcomings of my lodgings; instead, I'll just say that it was a roof over my head, and I had a toilet and running water and some peace and quiet, and I was not robbed, stabbed, shot, or otherwise physically violated. Also: the hostel proved to have a private, serene little backyard, for which my room had exclusive access (neither of which were advertised when I made the booking, ironically).
And it was there that I commenced my yoga for my latest NY escapade, using a towel for a mat, among some nameless plants and a peaceful, unidentified tree. Gentle wind blowing, ethnic chatterings from the surrounding homes, a keen sense of distance from the surrounding metropolis. Lovely.