Prior to moving to the Journal Square area of Jersey City. I had little to no knowledge of the area with the glaring exception of beautiful views of the former American Can Company we would often view from Rt. 9 and or The Pulaski Bridge. As we passed the yet to be renovated towers. We’d often comment, better yet drool about the possibilities of someday moving in to an old run down factory or industrial complex. Little did we know at the time that those run down, abandoned beauties would be reborn as loft condos.
Upon starting our four year process of searching for a home. We saw a number of properties in and around Jersey City before deciding against moving to the area. Then, all of the sudden, thanks to the wisdom and hindsight of our trusted realtor. We gave the area one last shot. On the day we came to see the very first unit the market offered us. We were both convinced that this was the place we wanted to be. This was the kind of home we always imagined but never thought we would find. And while it took some months and the loss of two units we had our hearts set on. We sealed the deal on one we both loved and still feel very happy to be in.
While the neighborhood took time getting used to. Exploring the surrounding areas has been an amazing adventure. In areas I once tip toed around for fear of trespassing or being interrogated. I know walk boldly. The neighborhood has evolved and changed for the better.The area has become quite colorful and artful with new murals being created in some of the most unexpected places and access to anywhere else I’d like to go is literally at our fingertips.
Aside from all those pretty good reasons to be positive. My neighbors and the residents here are pretty damn nice. See friends, families and pets in riding the elevators or roaming the halls daily only reassures me moved to the right place.
As the weather warms I plan to extend my walks, exploring more corners of the area and stop being so weary about those helicopters that seem to appear any time I get to close to a bridge or railroad. Wish me luck.
Living in Hoboken for a good ten years. My lazy, nothing ever happens before coffee, ass managed to capture just a handful of sunrises. That said, the sun coming up over Manhattan is a sight worth capturing again, again and again. Since moving to Jersey City however, I’ve come to appreciate sunsets in new and endlessly creative ways. In my first weeks and months here. I would climb up on the construction side of RT. 139, 9 and the Pulaski Bridge to watch the sun set over the nearby Kearny factories. It was, in a sense, the start of my daily meditation ritual. My moment to breathe and release the days stress and anxiety. After a long winter with very little sun to rise or set. During those dark days, I promised myself not to take for granted the little things that make life worth living. So tonight I took a long walk west on Newark Ave. towards the setting sun. Despite the endless string of automobiles noisily passing from both directions. I felt a sense of peace and solitude. Along the way I found some new angles and vantage points to capture the sunrise. And while it’s hard to avoid taking the same picture over and over. I’ve got plenty of time to try new things. Keep chasin’.
We were headed to our new bagel hideout when we made the turn just before the designated u-turn that would have put us on track for breakfast. As we rounded the long path that took us past the industrial park and back on to our preferred route. I realized we had hit an unexpected jackpot. That slight misstep allowed us access to some key views of the Pulaski Skyway and the bridge that is currently being worked on. So with camera in hand I hit the car seats eject button and composed a few shots. Within minutes I was back in the car and we were back on track for some fresh bagels and coffee. While there was a time when getting lost might lead me to self doubt and criticism. I’ve learned that it often leads to treasure and unexpected fun. It makes me proud knowing I have absolutely no sense of direction.
As the sun began to set, I grabbed my camera and headed downstairs for a relaxing moment up on the closure. Since moving here, I’ve grown so comfortable with exploring some of the off limits areas of my surroundings. So much so, that I imagined myself bringing a chair and a cooler up to their to watch the traffic go by as the sun sets. While construction on the Pulaski Skyway has been going on long before we moved here. As of this week, it’s intensified to include work that often extends to the morning hours. Quickly, I’ve come to realize that my backyard paradise might soon come to an end. Thinking back, not so long ago, when I first walked up that ramp. The anxiousness, my gelatin legs and that lack of balance I felt. It’s hard to imagine how comfortable I’ve become up there. While as my first trips had me wondering how soon the flashing lights would be upon me or if those circling helicopters were reporting on my whereabouts. I’ve become more and more at ease there. So imagine my surprise when I didn’t hear the truck rolling up on me until it was just inches away. My first thought was “Thank God, it’s not the Police.” That truck just happened to belong to someone with the construction team. Perhaps a foreman. “You know this is off limits and you are trespassing.” He was firm but not like most of the very angry and confrontational people I’ve come across in the past. I apologized, showed him some I.D. and explained how I couldn’t help but be enticed by the beauty of the sunset. I promised to leave, thanked him for understanding and promised not to return. I’m going to miss taking my trips up there, but I feel lucky to have had the chance to get some memorable photos from it. In the meantime, I have my sights set on some new areas to explore and photograph. I can’t wait to get started. Until then. Be good, be safe, be mindful.