Having lived in New York for a while, it takes a lot to impress me, wow me. It's one of the problems of aging I guess, that you can only have so many first moments, that soon enough you will have experienced this before or that before or something really close to it, and you lose that wide-eyed wonder that can happen when you first encounter something. When I first moved to this city, I was wowed by most of those clubs and bars I went to, me new to the city and never having experienced anything like those places. Having gone out so many nights for years and years now, I have become dulled to nightlife's capacity to make one feel lucky to be there, someone lucky to be here, someone so fucking glad to be alive, that somehow for an evening, you made it past the gates and landed in some cool alternate universe with amazing lighting, great sound, and beautiful people.
Last night, I went to the Shade: Shame party out in some massive warehouse in the wilds of Bushwick. I had originally said that I was not going, that I hate paying covers, let alone a $25 cover. After drinking all day on the Christopher Street Piers with Nik though, who was going, and after getting a call from another friend encouraging me to go, I didn't want the party to end, and said okay.
I am so happy I did. Even approaching it, I started to get that giddy expectation that I was going to something really cool. We had to cross a footbridge elevated over some railroad tracks to get there. It added to the allure that this party was cultivating, that of some rave in a secret warehouse that you had to get directions to the day of. I paused on the footbridge, standing over these railroad tracks running between these factories in this part of Bushwick I had never been in, looking toward the city, Freedom Tower aglow and towering over that line of buildings I trace in moments when I imagine home.
My mouth dropped again when I walked through the door and was confronted with insanely amazing lighting in this amazingly huge space. The sound was fantastic, insides-jiggling, no mater where in this warehouse you were. I was blown away in a way I haven't been in years. Pondering the logistics of it all, all the insane planning that had to go into this one night to make it work, and for it to work so well, to be so amazing, the cover didn't seem like a big deal at all. It felt so good to be wowed, to feel be at an awesome party with all these amazing people, everyone dancing, everyone loose.
I was a bit high, a bit drunk, and kept chasing poppers most of the night. I saw a lot of faces I hadn't expected to see. Everyone was in a great mood and it was so nice to encounter people in such a setting.
There was a moment late in the night when Prince's "Erotic City" was played in the midst of this otherwise very dance-heavy dj set. I was the happiest person in the world at that moment. I danced and danced and felt loose, unconstrained by whatever things normally constrains one from dancing how their body, not their mind, is telling them to move. It felt so fucking good.
I walked home over the Metropolitan Ave bridge over Newtown Creek, the second bridge I stood on that evening, admiring this view over this industrial body of water, factories the main thing around, Pumps strip club a block or so ahead, last call customers hanging out front, car headlights moving down the roadway, neon signs, and the smallest little trace of daylight starting to announce itself.