The first time I came to New York was 2005. I came into the Port Authority, got lost, made it to the Times Square subway station, got more lost, and finally called the friend that I was visiting to rescue me. New York was huge and confusing and dirty and beautiful.
I visited many more times in the years to come. I got to know Brooklyn and Manhattan and Queens. New York has depth. It has grand, sweeping spaces and monuments and it has quiet, intimate neighborhoods. It has soaring buildings and crumbling ones. It has great design and lovely letters.
I moved to Brooklyn in the fall of 2011. Since I came here, I've made a quiet, comfortable life. I've adopted a dog. I've married. For the last two years, I've been lucky enough to work for WNYC, one of the most "New York" places around.
Soon, I'll be leaving.
Two weeks ago, we visited London for the first time. (Heathrow makes for a much more inviting welcome than the Port Authority.) We took the subway into the city and wandered through Westminster. A squirrel tried to climb Liz.
London is vast and varied and huge and majestic. I've seen just a sliver of it. I can't wait to see more.
At the end of March, I'm starting a new job as a visual journalist at the Economist, producing data-driven stories. Soon after that, Liz and Ally and I will be packing all our things and moving to London.
When I came to New York four years ago, I didn't give much thought to when or how I'd leave; now that my departure looms, I'm going through the list of all the things I haven't done and all the people I haven't met. It's a long list, and I'm trying to figure out what more of this city I can cram in before I go.
To all the people who've made New York what it has been to me, thank you.
I'll see you in England.