I’ve always wanted to live in NYC for a year. With my house rented, again, I’m going on a wing and a prayer (and a home equity line of credit) this time at age 66!

My nine month sojourn traveling solo Down Under almost four years ago did change me.  Although I have enjoyed being home again in Maine for a couple of years, it’s difficult to return home after a long time because I can’t go home and be the person I was.  There’s been a change. Another adventure has been beckoning.  This time to New York City… a place many consider the greatest city in the world!

How this all came about started with an article about the twenty-fifth anniversary of Julia Cameron’s book, “The Artist’s Way.” Billed as “Discovering and Recovering your Creative Self,” it has sold over four million copies since its publication, and advocates writing free form in longhand three pages each morning, and taking yourself out once a week on an artist date.  Doing the morning pages first thing, allows you to dump any negative monkey mind thinking clogging up your brain and be more open (mindful) to being creative–a buzzword that seems to be every where in today’s market/workplace.

I had completed the eight week course a couple of times in the past, and in February found a box of books, including ‘The Artist’s Way” and a binder of morning pages I’d written before making my solo trip, which wasn’t even on my radar at the time.  I took this as a sign (synchronicity) and wrote the pages again.  My practice also included meditation, and, low and behold, the winds of change swept me up again.  Before I knew what I was doing, I had my house rented…  to the perfect couple (he’s from New Zealand).  Just like before, everything seems to be falling into place.

New York City is a different animal.  A beast of many wiles with an insatiable appetite for culture, fashion, entertainment, celebrity, and fabulous food.  It has to be tamed or its sharp claws will slice into your pockets and leave you destitute.  But it also has an infectious energy that lures you in.  And finding an apartment! My brother jokingly said recently he had to get married to find a place.

That younger brother has been in NYC since the late 80s and was smart to buy a place in Brooklyn in 2001. The house was in a seedy, dangerous neighborhood with burned out buildings around the corner and across the street (and always a place to park).  It is now hip and gentrified (and hard to park) and a great investment.  My son, a Pratt Institute grad, rents from him, but no room in the inn for me. Fortunately, a sister lives a 50- minute- Metro North train ride away in the lovely village of Irvington, on the Hudson. I have a soft place to fall.  And Costco is nearby!

I’m living out of my car again with the basics I think I’ll need.  Renting my home and moving again has been stressful, but I’ve become a minimalist and that has alleviated some of the pain.

I’ve sworn this is the last time I’ll do this.

But then again… Asheville, NC, sounds nice.


  1. Margaret Carr · November 29, 2019

    Great start Connie! And Asheville is a great location!


    • connieottmann · November 30, 2019

      Hi Maggie! Great to hear from you! I visited Asheville and stayed with Terry Cote for a couple of days three years ago. Loved it!


  2. Mary Elizabeth Harbison · November 30, 2019

    Good on you Connie! Would love to see you and catch up at the Holiday Ladies Luncheon-planning on coming? If not, will look forward to your tales on your blog. Oh, if you happen across Liam Nelson, hands off- he’s all mine………..😏


    • connieottmann · November 30, 2019

      HaHa! Yes, I agree he’s pretty nice! Won’t be at the luncheon but home for Christmas as some point!. Moving in with my new roommate this Wednesday in Brooklyn!


  3. Jenny Mckendry · December 2, 2019

    A spark has caught again! I’m glad you followed your Artist’s Way notes and are on your next adventure. You writing is great!!! Full of life!
    I hope you’ll post more pictures too


    • connieottmann · December 2, 2019

      Hi, Jenny! Yes, I’ll be including more pictures–Maybe upgrade my wordpress site to include video etc!? Learning my way around it again. Hope to see you at Christmas time! I’ll be home for a few days and would love to see you.


  4. Sharon · December 2, 2019

    Mah vah lus! We’re back only a month from El Camino with Maine winter setting in and while Leigh is delighted splitting wood, I am yearning to continue to a different place. Kudos to you.


    • connieottmann · December 3, 2019

      Great to hear from you, Sharon. Moving to my new apartment in Brooklyn, Wednesday. My roomie is a 32 Year old archivist. Interesting story


  5. Debra Jacques Minervino · December 3, 2019

    Good for you! Loved your last blog and “traveling” with you. You’re a woman for the ages Connie. Best of luck to you.


    • connieottmann · December 3, 2019

      Thanks, Debra! So nice to hear from you, and that you’re reading the blog again. I appreciate the note! Happy Holidays!


  6. Jane HIggins · December 5, 2019

    Way to go, Connie!


  7. Elizabeth A Nitzel · December 14, 2019

    Connie, I love your adventures! Can’t wait to see what I’ll do when I grow up!


    • connieottmann · December 14, 2019

      Hi Liz! Thanks so much for the comment, and especially, for sharing on Facebook! Things are going very well. I’m posting my next installment today or tomorrow. I’m very happy:))


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