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I’ve lived within 13 miles of NYC my entire adult life. For the last three years I’ve lived in downtown Jersey City. It’s just across the Hudson River from New York City. We call it the sixth borough of NYC. It’s a wonderful place to live. I can have a big, beautiful garden here which would be very hard
to find or afford in NYC. Its very urban but not too crowded. It’s got a nice blend of cultures and shops and restaurants that reflect its diverse population.
I ride my bike and walk everywhere. I’m a member of a beautiful community garden in The Heights section of Jersey City where I keep bees. The views of Manhattan are stunning.
I moved from a beautiful place in the suburbs after my kids grew up and moved to Brooklyn (with all
the other kids!) because I wanted to be closer to NYC. I always spent a lot of time in NYC for work
(I’m a decorative painter of residences, mostly in NYC) and fun and I love to bicycle and walk the streets of NYC. It’s 100% entertainment and inspiration. I get out of the city to the Berkshires and Maine for hiking and bicycling every couple of weeks. And I find a lot of nature escapes close to and even in the city. I forage for mushrooms and other wild foods everywhere. I go to all the greenmarkets too. I’m at a greenmarket almost every day.
Favorite restaurant(s), why?
Caravan of Dreams in the East Village. It’s legendary. I’m a vegetarian and I do a lot of cooking from produce I buy at the greenmarkets but at Caravan they make vegan and raw food way beyond the level of my cooking skills. And the people watching is so much fun. All kinds of exotic people in fabulous outfits. Pretty weird sometimes. So is their live, kooky music. And their raw desserts are irresistible!
On the other side of the island in the far West Village, is Café Gitane in The Jane Hotel. Such delicious French/Moroccan food and a wonderful airy pretty room, almost never crowded. Plus the people are so fun to look at…travelers from all over and some of them have to be stars, but I’m never sure. They just look so incredible. You can linger there for hours.
What is your favorite neighborhood and why?
The East Village is my favorite neighborhood. It’s got a community garden on almost every block. I’m passionate about community gardens. And I love the diversity of the community there and my favorite restaurant, Caravan of Dreams is there! The East Village is such a work of art. It’s like a constantly evolving sculpture that the entire community takes part every day in creating.
I could wander all day there stopping in tiny vintage shops, outdoor cafés, and picnicking in community gardens while chickens roam around and flower scents drift by. Heavenly.