More than a scientific paper or a review article, this is a remembrance of a unique time of science and life that the authors spent in Paul Greengard's laboratory at the Rockefeller University in New York in the 1980s and 1990s, forming the so-called synaptic vesicle group. It was a time in which the molecular mechanisms of synaptic transmission and the nature of the organelles in charge of storing and releasing neurotransmitter were just beginning to be understood. It was an exciting time in which the protein composition of synaptic vesicles started to be identified. It turned out that the interactions of synaptic vesicle proteins with the cytoskeleton and the presynaptic membrane and their modulation by protein phosphorylation represented an essential network regulating the efficiency of neurotransmitter release and thereby synaptic strength and plasticity. This is also a description of the distinct scientific journeys that the three authors took on going back to Europe and how they were strongly influenced by the generous and outstanding mentorship of Paul Greengard, his genuine interest in their lives and careers and the life-long friendship with him.