New York City: Four Years Down

It’s really weird to admit this. Especially considering the majority of our readers are likely New Yorkers who LOVE being New Yorkers, but New York never used to be my thing. I wasn’t the type of person that dreamed about moving here one day. That fantasized about flying through the New York streets in a yellow Taxi, the skyline of the city creating a consistent sheen of bright light and color. It just never really appealed to me that much. It felt oversaturated, hyperbolic, self-aggrandizing. I just knew it would chew me up and spit me out, and frankly I enjoyed living in a city that skewed herbivore.

I was a softy through and through (and through and through), and when I moved to Chicago, I thought that was as city as I’d go. I loved Chicago. In spite of the harrowing winters, my long commutes, and my bike getting stolen (actually, that one still stings). For one, K and I lived together (every close sister-combo’s dream), in an impeccably decorated, two-bedroom, apartment. I had a balcony off my bedroom, guys. I had two sinks in my bathroom. A bathtub and a standing shower. A desk, a queen-sized bed, two night stands, a TV stand, and a couch all in my room. IN MY ROOM.

I loved my job at FCB. I loved my smart, down-to-earth, genuine, kind, friends. I felt like a part of something. Friday night happy hours, overly indulgent dinners at Portillos (that glutinous chocolate cake though…), karaoke. Life felt pretty great.

But the English language gave us qualifiers like “pretty” great for a reason. For moments and feelings of inadequacy. When something is just incomplete. And there was something very significant missing from my life in Chicago.

Abi.

So after many conversations, job interviews, lonely days, and red-eye flights, I decided to take the plunge, and move to New York (because I couldn’t move my then-finance-boyfriend to Chicago when he was in the finance capital of the world, and I watched enough Mad Men to convince myself that New York was the place to be in Advertising, too).

I packed up my beautiful apartment, made a deal with K that we’d live in the same city again one day (BLESS), and trudged over to the Big Apple.

This was exactly four years ago today. And I can’t believe how much New York has changed my life, but maintained my essence.

It has injected me with confidence, strength, resilience. My skin is much much thicker, but my soul is just as gentle as it always has been. It’s taught me to love myself, and put myself first, and treat myself to everything life has to offer. To take my time growing up. That maturity doesn’t come with stature, or money, or property, or children, it manifests in a mindset. That birds of a feather don’t need to always flock together! And as cheesy as it is, diversity is life! It’s taught me that being weird is f*cking awesome. That I want to have a story unlike any other’s. That I don’t care if people think I’m kooky, as long as I’m being true to myself. Because being true to oneself is the single most important pillar of living the best life. I’ve learned when to say yes, and when to say no. I’ve learned that it’s perfectly fine (/completely amazing) to spend a Friday night on the couch in my dog’s company, watching Charmed and eating boxed mac n cheese. I’ve learned that when something becomes an obligation instead of a pleasure, it’s okay to let it go (within reason, we’re all responsible adults here).

Don’t get me wrong – New York has torn me down. Way down. But, man, has it built me up. If my pre-NYC-self saw my life now, she’d be thrilled. And maybe even in awe. Knock on wood.

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Not to mention, now I’m totally the type of person that looks out of the windows of my yellow taxi at the New York City skyline with gratitude and dreamy wonder.

Love you NYC,

A

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Adventures in September

Well well,

It’s been quite a while since our last post. As usual, things have been moving at the speed of light, leaving Jointly a little bit behind. But, we’re here to catch you all up on the Gautam (-Pai) adventures!

This past weekend I (K) was in NYC celebrating A’s birthday with her. The weekend was chock-full of awesome places, wonderful people, and a lot of fun.

On Friday Mr. P and I (K, again!) slowly made our way to Gotham West Market where we grubbed on…well, an excessive amount of junk food that we’d rather not disclose. And then, we did something that was sort of a big deal…

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K signed her first official (real adult) job offer! Next Monday I (K) will be starting my advertising career at FCB Chicago (formerly known as Draft FCB). The funny thing is, this is the same company and the exact same position where A started her career. Yet another similarity! And some pretty big shoes to fill.

On Friday evening we celebrating the big job acceptance with a few bottles of Rose on A&A’s rooftop, and then headed to dinner at Nizza – a very gluten-free friendly (and DELICIOUS) Italian restaurant in Hell’s Kitchen. Cue more wine, cheese, meats, and pastas, and we were completely fooded out.

On Saturday we ventured over to Williamsburg to look at A & A’s new apartment and familiarize ourselves with the area. Our first stop was obviously Primp & Polish, because it’s not a Gautam Girl weekend without a manicure. I would say it was probably the best manicure I’ve ever gotten. And A’s is probably the wackiest she’s ever gotten (hint: It’s lime green – quite a departure from her usual neutrals).

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After some pampering, we grabbed a quick lunch at The Meatball Shop, one of our usual favorites, and then headed over to see A & A’s new place (which may just become the only place either of us are motivated to use the gym)!

Despite a few encounters with some sour people (from which we surmised that perhaps people in Brooklyn may actually be more stuck up than folks in Manhattan), we had a great time exploring A&A’s new hood.

Saturday night, Mr. P planned a little family dinner for us and the Koitas at Pera Soho. Sadly, it was raining so we couldn’t take full advantage of the gorgeous garden seating, but we had a ton of awesome Mediterranean food and some delicious cocktails. After dinner, we headed to A’s party. She wanted to keep it low key this year, so she hosted it at a Jazz Lounge called B Flat in Tribeca. She had the greatest time – it was clear to everyone who attended. Lots of friends, laughs, and glasses of champagne. What else could a woman ask for?

On Sunday, I (K) got some time to see two of my closest friends who just recently moved to NYC. We grabbed dinner at Bea and then hung around, catching up, exchanging stories about jobs, cities, our moms, and life in general. The atmosphere was amazing for an intimate meet up with close friends.

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The next few weeks will be even crazier than the last few. With two big moves, one big job, and lots of work in between, we’re going to have our hands full. But looking forward to sharing many more adventures as our lives take steps in new directions. It’s going to be a great Fall.

Jointly yours,

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 presetAnd yay, sisterhood!

A & K

Another Long Weekend in NYC

Hey guys, happy Tuesday! May your week fly by!

I’ve been in NYC for the last five days, getting some much needed sissy time with A. Right now, I’m writing this at Mother while she diligently works, but haaay for being a second semester senior (just kidding it actually kicks my ass on the daily, but whatever). Technically I came in town for a bridal shower that her soon-to-be-sisters-in-law threw for her but I, of course, stayed far beyond that and forced her to partake in some NYC adventures with me. We have a ton of fun to share with you, and it’s mostly in the form of pictures (at least they aren’t selfies!).

The (boozy) bridal shower was amazing. The Pai sisters hosted it at this great restaurant in the Lower East Side called Saxon + Parole. We got the back room, delicious food (I’ll take anything with Nutella), and probably the best Bloody Marys ever. A had such a good time that she kept telling everyone it was the best day of her life. I’m sure you’ll all envisioning this was after the unlimited cocktails, but I can assure you, it was before them too 🙂

Image A getting bridal in her tiara – seriously how cute is this sign?

Image A + K

Image(Some of) The Gautam + Pai sisters

The next day (sadly after our cousin S and friend N left), NYC decided to let up and give A and I a little sunshine. So we took to the town. We explored Williamsburg, East Village, Greenwich Village, and ended the day with a FaceTime session with our parents in Union Square.

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How cool is this graffiti wall in Williamsburg?

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We stopped in this little shop called Flower Power and checked out herbs and oils.

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We then hit up Strand Book Store (home to eighteen miles of books) and Alabaster Bookshop (where these photos were taken) because every day should have at least a hint of knowledge in it. And because we love to read.

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And then we came home to this guy. Nothin’ like the love of a little pup pup (even if I had to clean his pee a few times).

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So thanks, NYC, for another amazing weekend. After some time with family, I now feel refreshed and ready to wrap up the last month of my undergraduate career. That’s a complete lie, I’m not ready, and I don’t want to leave. But hey, I can get through a month, right?

Lots of love,

K (and sort of A who’s next to me but talking advertising)

The Doggy Diaries – Part I

I have a confession to make. Amidst the utter utter madness that is my life right now, I haven’t been focusing on what I should. Work is… happening. Wedding planning is also happening. And though my brain is chugging along and going through all of the necessary motions, my heart is doing something entirely different.
Dreaming about a dog.
About two weeks ago, I found and fell in love with this puppy on Petfinder. He was up for adoption and I just HAD TO HAVE him. His name was Squigles. YES. Squigles.
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I emailed the volunteer to inquire, and found out he had a ton of applications on him. Of course I freaked out because I had immediately planned our entire life together, and submitted an application. Fiancé was busy, so he found out later. Ooops. This is the wrong way to go about things. I know!!!!!
I couldn’t stop thinking about my future puppy. I looked at what supplies I would need, made fiancé a Keynote presentation filled with reasons why we should get a dog and why we could absolutely, 200%, without a doubt handle it splendidly. I even called a local Vet to find out how much all of the first-year medical treatments would cost.
I was serious. Zero to obsessed in a matter of days.
Squigles didn’t end up working out *cue devastation and unruly tears.* Adoption, even in the puppy sense, is hard. It’s trying and risky and sad (though of course it’s incredibly rewarding when it does work out – and is undoubtedly the best way to go). And even though I didn’t know what to do with myself after what I thought was my dream puppy, slipped through my fingers (except allow Fiancé to cheer me up with dreams of the puppy we’d pick together), I knew that the time in my life had just arrived. I always knew I wanted a dog, and suddenly, something just clicked (I’d appreciate if you avoid making weird nesting jokes about my maternal instincts – I’m only 26, people!).
I had taken a step in the right direction. AND, due to my excellently crafted presentation (thank you, Advertising for teaching me how to sell!), I had convinced Fiancé.
So now we’re in the process of looking for our future puppy (which is much harder than you think but also probably much more exciting)! We’re exploring the best routes to getting a healthy, happy puppy, in a way that keeps our conscience clear. No pet stores for us!
So call us crazy, tell us we have bad timing, continue to scream at us about how we should “WAIT UNTIL AFTER THE HONEYMOON!” but we will politely ignore you. This is going to happen!
I will keep you all posted. I think things will happen pretty fast :), so keep your eyes peeled for a puppy reveal sometime very soon!
Excitedly Yours,
A
PS – If anyone else is thinking of bringing a furry loved one into their life, I can drop some serious knowledge, so shoot me a note.