After 20 years in Brooklyn I was finally priced out of my borough this summer—much like I’d been priced out of Manhattan two decades earlier. It’s a typical NYC story, but unlike the couples profiled in the most recent eye-roller of a NY Times story on the phenom, my man and I weren’t in a position to lick our wounds in a $500k Jersey City loft.
While Williamsburg has been the butt of five bazillion jokes, I was born in New Jersey, so I’m used to being at the ass-end of a funny. Yes, Bedford Avenue has fancy cheeses and boys in too-tight, ill-fitting women’s skinny slacks to mock, but I’d lived there for two decades and I was kind of attached to the four walls I’d painted loud colors, to the ridiculously specific restaurants, to the little community my neighbors and I had become. I mean, how lucky was I to have one of my closest friends in the same building, just one floor away?
Growing up, my family moved around every few years, so until I landed on North 11th Street, I never really had any place that I considered home. But this place was big enough for one person (though it eventually housed two humans, and three felines) and cheap enough that I could afford it on my own, which was key as a freelancer with a rollercoaster-like income. After five or six years, I started to consider it my home and instead of freaking out at the commitment, I liked it.
I loved it, actually. (more…)