I feel finally ready to conclude my feelings about New York by listing some likes and dislikes. Before starting I should mention that moving to New York had long been one of my biggest dreams despite the fact that I had never been there before. I guess I have nothing but the countless amount of movies, songs and amazing stories to blame. 😉 Due to those I had of course formed some preconceptions but I tried my best to keep an open mind. I was also prepared to face the fact that I might end up hating the city. Well did I? No.
Let’s start with the positive! Here is the list of things I loved.
- People. Many people think New Yorkers are rude and ignorant but that is not true. The people are kind and extremely helpful- maybe sometimes a little busy but that is understandable as they are all trying to make it in the city.
- The culture of polite and social. Quick compliments from people walking by on busy streets, “keep up the good work”- pep talks at the gym, small conversations about the weather by the water – small things that make a big difference.
- Service. Especially in restaurants, coffee places and stores the service was great. I really felt that the staff in these places really cared and were there to exceed customer expectations. I do acknowledge that in some places the tip can work as a motivator but also in “tipless places” such as clothing stores the sales people introduced themselves and were always eager to help (even though you tried a million different pieces and didn’t like anything.. 😉 ).
- It is so beautiful everywhere. No matter where you are you can take a picture to capture what’s in front of you- that will be beautiful.
- Difference between areas. Manhattan is a surprisingly tiny island but it has several areas which are all completely different from each other. Areas like East and West Village consist of only low buildings and the atmoshphere is peaceful and town-like, whereas midtown is full of skyscrapers, downtown filled with financial corporations etc. Of course there are also Brooklyn, Queens and The Bronx, which all deserve to be mentioned. My favorite areas in Manhattan are Upper West Side, East & West Village and Gramercy Park but I also loved spending time downtown (or anywhere) by the water.
- Water & Parks. Once more. The light breeze combined with the smell of water make me happy every single time. I feel so calm just by looking at the river or ocean in addition to which I love the contrast created towards all the concrete. The above also apply to parks (especially the mightiest of them all: Central Park).
- Music. Concerts, live music in bars, street performers- everything, all the time.
- Inspiring people on the streets. I have never been so inspired that in New York. I wore the craziest outfits and came up with the weirdest ideas. So refreshing.
- You can do anything at any time. Art, sport games, comedy clubs, all kinds of different tours, boat rides, bar openings, shopping, tv-shows.. “If you can dream it, you can do it in New York”, I heard.
- Feeling of Freedom. Is there something better?
A few things thatI did not love…
- The Subway. Yes it is very handy, I admit that, however the rats, dirt, heat and aggressive people make the rides slightly less enjoyable..
- Places with a lot lot of people. To be honest I am not the biggest fan of Times Square or any other place that is constantly fully packed with people. Gladly there are only a few such places and so much more.
- The heat. New York in August (even in September) is be very hot. If you are not prepared for over 30 degrees in a city setting, you should visit another time. 😉
- The New York Crazies. Everybody who has taken the New York Subway or any paid attention while scrolling down the streets knows what I am talking about.
- The unavoidable yet very visible inequality. According to The Economist there are 63,000 homeless people in shelters of New York. Around 3000 people sleep on the streets. This is obviously horrible and makes you wonder constantly.
Maybe it was the feeling of seclusion- being completely separated from the rest of the world- that in the weirdest way made me feel like home. I am grateful that I got to try out what it would be like to be to live in New York and I am sure I’ll be back. Until next time.
In New York
Concrete jungle where dreams are made of
There’s nothing you can’t do
Now you’re in New York
These streets will make you feel brand new
Big lights will inspire you
Let’s hear it for New York
In case you have any questions or would like to have some tips, please just let me know. 🙂