I've never lived in New York, but I do have decent memories of the last time I was there (when I was 10). I wouldn't mind being there now, at least for a few hours, to go see the Met's Byzantium: Faith and Power 1261-1557 expo. I rather negatively reviewed the New York Times ' take on it a while back, but the photos I've seen are nothing less than spectacular.
To make up some for knocking the Times, I should mention that they're one of the best folks on the Africa beat. Not so much in their analyses, perhaps, but in the obscurity of the issues they dig up. Nicholas Kristof is one of the best for finding random weirdness in the remotest parts of the Earth.
I mention this now because they just ran an article on US military training in Africa:
The United States is working with the countries of the so-called Sahel, the impoverished southern fringe of the Sahara, to shore up border controls and deny sanctuary to suspected terrorists. The program, called the Pan-Sahel Initiative, was begun with $7 million and focused on Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Chad. It is being expanded to include Senegal and possibly other countries.
When I lived in Kenya, we often interacted with the US forces in the middle of the Sahel. Most African armies could use more training, but then the training likely went both ways: After the 1998 embassy bombings it was widely believed that the Kenyan police did most of the "interrogation." Anyway, the picture here is of the man thought to be the al Qaeda agent behind most of Kenyan terrorism, Fazul Abdullah Muhammad. A year before this article ran, I was unwittingly in his hometown, Siyu. It sports a really cool 19th century Zanzibarian fortress, a single Landrover, and a Koranic school. If you ever are out the Kenyan coast way, I highly recommend taking a sail out to Paté Island for a visit. There's all sorts of interesting history (Portuguese, Arab, Omani, Indian, Somali, even Chinese).