One of the many unexpected pleasures of parenting Max is the renewed appreciation I find that I have for my neighborhood: the East Village. I have lived in the East Village more or less since Stewart and I started dating in early 2001. I say “more or less” because I was technically living in Brooklyn at the time, and subsequently Harlem, but I spent most of my overnights at Stewart’s pad on Second Avenue and Ninth Street from early on in our relationship. Actually, it was Stewart’s brother’s pad as well, and I’m sure that he will tell you that three is definitely a crowd. Even then I loved the neighborhood. There were so many cheap restaurants, unpretentious gay bars and little boutique shops. So when Stewart and I decided to officially move in together by buying an apartment, we pretty much looked exclusively in the East Village.
So why have I fallen back in love with the East Village? Because it is Max’s home. It has his playgrounds and libraries, his outdoor cafes and communal gardens, and his calming sojourns around the block. A neighborhood is only as good as its people, and the East Village is good people. I hope we get to stay.