There’s no way not to get lost in the West Village.–I’ve met people who have lived there for decades who still got lost–but, that’s what makes the West Village the West Village. It’s an unsettling feeling the first time you walk through the Village to learn that the grid has gone crooked as suddenly W. 4th Street crosses W. 10th. It’s part of its quirkiness and charm.
I’ve heard a lot about how the Village isn’t the place it use to be twenty years ago. It’s lost some of the uniqueness that drove in the artists and writers. I only ever read about and saw photographs of that Village, I never had the opportunity to walk and visit it. No matter how much people say its changed, it’s still the most charming part of the city I’ve found. Tree lined streets. Townhouses. Brownstones. Hidden Gardens. Even now it’s no wonder that authors and poets, musicians and artists flocked and still flock to the area. There are certainly tourists and there are certainly more mainstream shops and restaurants, but so are there in all parts of the city.
When you walk the streets of the West Village it still feels like a small tight knit community. You get the impression that people know each other. That the guy at the coffee shop knows what everyone is going to order before they order. That everyone knows exactly which place to go to get the best bread and which store has the freshest fruit.
It’s a shame the West Village is so expensive to live in. If it weren’t I’d be getting lost there every day.