You'd think I'd spend winter holed up in my apartment away from the cold. But for some reason, winter in New York brings me out. If it's a dry day, I love wandering through the streets playing Ryan Adams on my iPod and feeling the wind turn my cheeks rosy. I'm not so afraid to feel cold if I have the right soundtrack.
I did the same thing last winter (my first in New York), and found myself doing it again last week. Maybe it comes with the fact that Christmas shopping in New York means going from store to store outside, and not in a mall. The marked difference this year is exactly which Ryan Adams songs...last year I remember listening to "Dear Chicago" and "To Be the One" on repeat; this year, I've been pulling out his whole catalog and trying to skip his most sad and desperate of songs, because walking through Manhattan and thinking of everything that's happened this year, well, it's just doesn't fit. This year, I'm that girl walking in the furry hat and smiling (all teeth showing, until they get cold). I even stuck out my tongue on Madison Avenue among the fur-coated women to catch snowflakes.
So I've taken these walks as a reflection of my year. I'll be producing some sort of written reflection here; I do remember being so fed up with 2006 last year that I didn't even attempt to catalog it or make tops lists or anything. I don't want to generalize last year, because it had its great moments, but it was also not my best. I think 2007 recalibrated my optimism to its former glory, and I've never enjoyed a year more. More on this later.