By Melissa Lim
2020 for me would read something like this; January, February, Corona, December.
I relocated here from London in June 2019, so just over a year ago, to the corner of Perry/Hudson in the West Village, never thinking I would live America. Who knew then that I picked the most strange of times to move to the most extra-ordinary city.
I debated leaving the city when the pandemic hit, but I stayed and again during the riots around BLM. The Village was all boarded up at its peak and I really felt the city would run out of plywood, and to those who left the city it looked defeated. I would be lying if I didn’t have days where I felt the same—robbed of the full ‘New York’ experience in my first year; with late night jazz clubs and somewhere to always go. But the hum of the city is coming back and the plywood has already had a second lease of life in the great outdoor patios!
Like many of my friends the pandemic has taken its toll on our mental health in different ways; and even for the most resilient of us as we faced changes to work and life. The very things that brought us here to this vibrant city meant that the change in pace was so much harder; the shutdowns brought all the more anxiety and a huge craving for stimulation and a way to expend the restless energy.
It is with this restless energy, desire to soothe the mind and a resolve to use this time inside, Potteree (www.potteree.com) was born in the West Village. A clay pottery box designed to connect you with your friends and family, your next app date or self-care time in the comfort of your own home. It comes fully equipped with all the tools you will need to get creative and hand building.
The pandemic has not passed, and as temperatures cool we keep a watchful eye over daily cases threatened by the risk of further lockdowns. Potteree represents a reimagining of a way we can connect with each other and disconnect from technology. Providing respite from the uncertain world around us through the restorative and meditative benefits of ‘art therapy’ to relax the mind and reduce the stress.
But Potteree also represents the opportunities that have come from lives upended; and a green shoot emerging from the darkness and tragedy of Coronavirus. The resilience in the city to come back better and to not be beaten by the most grim of circumstances.
It has been just over a year but perhaps I have the grit to belong in New York City after all.
Potteree boxes are $50 for a home activity for two people to mix up your next weekend.
Melissa Lim is a West Village resident, creature of habit and global citizen. Founder of Potteree.