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Nina In New York: Happy New Year

A young professional's take on the trials and tribulations of everyday life in New York City.

I really feel that the year begins around this time. New Year's resolutions are too contrived and overhyped—there's all this pressure to be ambitious and come up with something monumental, and who really wants to motivate in the dead of winter? For gosh sakes, I'm still eating Christmas cookies in January. I can barely make it out of my apartment, I'm certainly not going to pick up zen gardening or train for a marathon or book a trip to an ashram or stop eating cookies. Those items are, uh, all currently still pending.

But I do start to feel pretty motivated at the onset of warm weather. Each spring, I vow to do all the exciting, creative, cultural or simply social activities I didn't do the previous year to get the most out of my summer. For instance, my 2011 goals are already shaping up nicely: I'm going to lose 10 lbs and go explore some new beaches and accessible yet sanitary swimming pools (those two items are not mutually exclusive). I'm finally going to take a trip to Ellis Island! Governors Island! Even Staten Island! I'm going to brave the lines and try Grimaldi's pizza (is it really worth the wait?) and walk across the Brooklyn Bridge, and I'm going to check out Water Taxi Beach and eat Russian food in Brighton Beach and I'm going to rent a free kayak on the Hudson and see a movie at Pier 1 on the Upper West Side, plus I haven't seen the Cloisters since I was twelve. I plan to have more picnics in Central Park and go to the bar on the roof of the Met and go gallery hopping. Of course, I should also spend more time outside of the city, visiting nature and breathing rural air and the like. I'm going to give rock climbing a try and learn to bhangra dance, plus I'm going to snag tix to something at the Public Theater. There's more, but I forget. But those things are thrilling and important too, without a doubt.

Of course, the majority of my past summers have been spent attempting to go from air conditioned space to air conditioned space, feeling very frizzy and worn out and sweaty. But I've managed to follow through on some of my intentions over the years, and I've got a good feeling about this one. What did I miss? What do I want to steal from your list? Pile it on! I'm feeling saucy. Oh! That reminds me: cooking class.

What are your plans, goals or events you're looking forward to this spring? Sound off below...

Dear Readers: While I am rarely at a loss for words, I'm always grateful for column ideas. Please feel free to e-mail me your suggestions.

Nina Pajak is a writer and publishing professional living with her husband on the Upper West Side.

The Nina Archives:

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Standing At The Edge Of Tomorrow...Today!

Scientists Want Us To Quit Our Jobs, Go Become Farmers. Thanks, Scientists.

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Tramp Stamp?

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