When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson

30 July 2005

Heading back downtown, hallelujah

After working in Midtown West (far, far west... almost in the Hudson River, almost in New Jersey, really) for the last year, I'm moving offices.

I'm staying with the same employer, but Monday morning I'll be reporting to work in the heart of the Financial District.

And so I come full circle. When I moved to New York City about ten years ago, my first gig was down on Wall Street. Well, on Exchange Place, to be exact, but you get the picture.

Actually, here's the picture:

entryway to twenty exchange place
The rather ornate entrance to 20 Exchange Place,
the old City Bank Farmer's Trust building, where I used to work.

I'll be working right around the corner from there starting next week.

So I rode the train downtown to re-familiarize myself with the commute, and with the neighborhood.

It's even easier than I remembered... the 2/3 Express from 14th St to Wall St takes about ten minutes (fifteen, door-to-door) and drops me a block from my new workplace.

And there's a big old Starbucks right outside the subway stop, and another on the first floor of the building.

Yes, I know a lot of you think Starbucks is evil, but I just spent the last year working in a place where the best coffee within fifteen minutes' walk was served by a guy in a "mud truck" who set his cart up on the sidewalk.

After that, to me, the Mermaid looks like the Promised Land.

I stopped working downtown in the fall of 2000, not quite a year before 9/11. As you can imagine, there have been some substantial changes down there since then.

Security around the Stock Exchange was always tight, but now it is very rigorous indeed throughout the entire area.

I met a very friendly explosives expert (and her support staff) outside my new building:

Tail-wagging explosives expert and friends
For security reasons, this dog cannot be identified by name,
nor can we show you a picture of her face.

I'm looking forward to new opportunities and new challenges. And better restaurants at lunchtime.

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