New York City is all mine. Well at least Wall Street is on a humid August night that found me alone. Trinity Church grows more impressive with each step and I see not a soul down Nassau or Broad. Seems the Financial District dies along with the workday. Gone are the amorphous, amoeba-like packs of Asians with cameras, no quintessential Wall Street business men, no more tourists climbing on and groping poor George Washington’s legs for pictures nor are there any locals. Just the night surrounding a humble boy from the desert of Phoenix on his first trip to New York City.

I find my back against a wall transfixed by the massive United States flag hung from the New York Stock Exchange. My own thoughts and the train stopping below me at the Broad Street station are all I hear. I’m no longer the tourist and left with time to think about the day that was with my friend and tour guide. She decided to retreat to sleep but I feel fated and motivated to start construction on something humble yet grand here and now.

Every epic needs an origin to be forged and why not in the foundry of history before the NYSE and Federal Hall? How much more historically and symbolically American can this get? Standing inspired and proud in front of my nation’s flag on arguably the physical embodiment of capitalism and free market next to the building where George Washington took the oath as the first President of an emerging United States of America.

After years of hard work and failures to launch, my wings are strong enough to soar across the country to one of the greatest cities in the world before history and with new resolve. Determined to travel farther both in miles (or kilometers) and so far beyond my current perceptions while motivated by what my country’s flag represents. With hard work and sacrifice, I know more experiences like this can and will be mine. I’m meant for more. I wasn’t born just to pay bills and die.

Recognizing the exact moment when you know, for the better, your life will never be the same floods the mind with so many thoughts, choices and possibilities. I’ve beat down the devil of doubt and told myself as soon as I had the opportunity, I would slash the sky, run the earth and be one with the world. I’m tasting the fruit of that labor, physically seeing and feeling the outside world is not a myth, it’s not impossible, it’s real and literally all around me. No longer fighting nor war-weary of searching for the key to the lock keeping me in darkness. Instead I just decided to set fire to the door, watch it burn and leave it behind me in a smoldering ruin.

Cheers and good day to the readers from all around the world. I want to wish an emphatic happy birthday to the USA, hate it or love it, with all her strengths and flaws. She still looks fine for 239. Happy Independence Day to my fellow citizens and visitors of the imperfect but ever so fucking glorious and tenacious United States of America.

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