Day 130 – Grateful For a New York State of Mind

Grid, fashion, cold, bustling, thriving, poor, rich, energizing, cutting-edge, arty, cosmopolitan, strong, impolite, impersonal, imposing, clique, daunting, culinary, dirty, multi-cultural, active, world-famous, influential, the City So Nice, They Named It Twice, The City That Never Sleeps, Empire City, Gotham, the Empire State Building, the Brooklyn Bridge, Broadway, The Big Apple, – this is New York City!

It is the center of the world for artists. It is fashion, where designer shops line the neighborhoods, where discount stores are wild with shoppers. Food is everything, from pizza-by-the-slice to wild boar and polenta, from toasted bagel with cream cheese and jelly to warm squid salad with radicchio, from warm beer to martini. And the holiday season, from the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, the big Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center to New Year’s Eve in Times Square and watching the ball drop.

My journey to New York began as I landed at JFK airport and took the NYC Airportershuttle to Manhattan. Arriving at the Grand Central Terminal on 42nd St, I was immediately thrown into the hustle and bustle as people were moving at such a fast pace. I boarded the number 6 train to Astor Circle. Upon exiting, I noticed that crossing the streets on red lights was common. So, I joined right in in order to speed things up so I would not be too late.

For, I had the pleasure of meeting with the amazing John Castagnini, who is a best-selling author, poet, creator of The Perfect Idea and founder of

I met John at a heath juice place on 2nd and 11th St. called Liquiteria. Awesome place, as I tried the pear juice that totally pleased my senses. As John discussed the importance of living a healthy life, we walked the streets of the East Village, stopping to sample one of best chocolate chip cookies in the world. (I’m on a healthy, balanced diet). We then parted ways, not before we took this picture, and I thanked him for the powerful discussions we had about life. I learned that no matter what challenges we face, we need to bring the experiences we have, good or bad, to a place of thankfulness, appreciation, and love. Thank you John!

I then took the Line 6 subway to 59th St, and made my way to Central Park, never thinking I would meet the great Elmo!The splendor of this perfect day only added the beauty that is Central Park. Watching people, take in the day playing baseball, picnicking in the park and tourists, like me, taking pictures was amazing. Being a big Beatles fan, the highlight for me was visiting Strawberry Fields, which is dedicating to the memory of John Lennon.Strawberry Fields was dedicated on what would have been Lennon’s 45th birthday, 9 October 1985, by New York Mayor Ed Koch and Lennon’s widow Yoko Ono, who had underwritten the project.

Sitting on a park bench, watching people take photos of Imagine, got me into a deeper thinking of what Imagine is all about. I think Lennon’s main goal in writing this song is to get people to stop living life for what happens after we die and start living life for today. “imagine all the people/living for today.”

I think that Lennon was strong about the world that we live in and thought what a better place it could be. I love the song because it tells what he thinks the world should be like.

Imagine there’s no Heaven
It’s easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today

Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace

You may say that I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world

You may say that I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will live as one

I had to be a part of this! And bought a few of these buttons as souvenirs!Then I decided to walk 30 blocks to Times Square. I noticed every corner in Midtown is packed with people waiting to cross the street. Everyone is rushing to get to the meeting, the java fix, the subway. No stopping to smell the roses here—just grab a bunch of flowers from one of the many vendors and smell them as you hurry on to your next destination. But this is what makes New York so special. Soon I made it to the bright lights, here on Broadway. Even met a celebrity.So, today I am grateful to the city of New York. In a nutshell, NYC is a fast-paced metropolis. You can do almost anything you want, anytime you want, and find a way to get there. NYC is the city that never sleeps. It makes you work a little harder. It forces you to interact—with taxi drivers, street musicians, people riding the subway, people talking on cell phones, people talking to themselves. As Billy Joel writes about in his song, you definitely get into a New York state of mind. And New Yorkers are so friendly, they talk to you, they treat tourists kindly. I love New York! 


About Dave, The Gratitude Guy

Dave Block, aka “Dave, The Gratitude Guy” is an emerging entrepreneur on a mission to spread a powerful message about the importance of having daily gratitude in your life. His cause is to create positive change in the world by educating everyone, through his appearances, blogs, videos, and future projects that the best way for us to value our present day happiness is to be grateful for what we have in our life right now. If more people lived life this way, great changes would occur. Just understand that by being who you really are, you will attract more of what you truly want in your life. And gratitude is the key that opens up the door to happiness. Recently, Dave have branded himself with Thank God I... to create a new interview series called "The Thank God I..." Interview. The interviews are with empowering people from Movies, TV, Music,and Sports who have encountered hardships and had to endure tough times in life only to emerge stronger by their attitude and how they are thankful for it all. For more information, please visit
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2 Responses to Day 130 – Grateful For a New York State of Mind

  1. John Catagnini says:

    Thank God David Block has a eart of Gold…..

  2. John,

    Thank you as well. For showing up in the world, and being you! You have touched my life in such a wonderful way that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.


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