In wake of the storm Sandy, I have had New York on my mind a lot lately. I have been checking up on friends who live there or in the area, I have donated funds to a friend who is making trips there frequently with supplies that people donate. It’s heartbreaking to know that winter is arriving in giant strides, and there are people in New York and New Jersey who’s homes have been torn away from them by mother nature. Imagine no longer having your home? None of your belongings. No bed of your own to sleep in. Your couch where you would curl up with a good book, gone. Your kitchen where you were planning on making a giant turkey for your family and loved ones to celebrate Thanksgiving…disappeared. Scary thought, non? If you can, please take the time to go donate, or spread the word to keep people aware that the problem is not over.
So in the aftermath of this terrible storm, and all the reminiscing I have done about New York lately, I thought I would share with you my favorite things in New York.
I have never lived there, but I have spent a considerable amount of time in the Big Apple; whether it was visiting friends or my twin sister who lived there for several years, or if it was going there for a fun weekend to take dance classes or for interviews for college scholarships…only a few hours away from where I grew up, New York may have been my destination had I not run off to Paris! I love the energy there, I love the constant movement, the possibility that ANYTHING could happen. The anonymity you have walking down the street. I like the largeness of New York. And the options. New York is a city so full of options! (So American of me, I know. Well…whadya want!! You can take the girl out of America, but you can’t take the America out of the girl). Hey, we like options in America!
So as much as I love Paris, New York does offer some things that I miss about the USA…and I thought I would dedicate this post to those little things, in hopes that it will inspire you all to ponder on New York and perhaps donate if you can to those who have lost everything to Sandy.
Here are the five things I miss most about New York City :
Thai food take-out delivery. Or Chinese food take out delivery. This is the thing I miss most about New York. Yes, I know. It’s strange. But in Paris, you could perhaps find a way to get Thai take-out delivered, but it’ll cost you three times what the meal is worth, and it’ll take about two hours. In NYC you can order it and have the delivery guy knocking on your door in 20 minutes. I soooo miss that. And having it served with those white cardboard paper fold-top boxes. No one has those here!!!! It’s all about the aesthetics….and the delivery.
Large expansive sidewalks with ample room to walk, where people don’t remain in your way and pretend like you don’t exist when they have obviously seen you and you are either struggling with a large/heavy load of things, or are walking much faster. Once I remember walking down the street in the 5th, in a hurry, and I had on some super high heels so my steps were quite loud. Two girls were walking in front of me, taking up the entire sidewalk. They would have had to have been deaf to not have heard my steps clicking furiously on the pavement. I thought to myself, “ugh, getting around them is going to be tricky and unpleasant”. But much to my surprise they moved slightly to the side as I approached. I was shocked needless to say, and couldn’t image two Parisian born and bred ladies actually stepping aside for me. I thought that perhaps I had judged these Parisians wrong the whole time! And as I passed them I over hear a word or two of their conversation. They were speaking in English with American accents. Of course. But in New York there are these fabulous large sidewalks that give enough room for everyone. Or is it just that they seem large since Americans tend to have this polite habit of stepping out of the way for you.
A taxi at the tip of my fingers. I miss putting out my hand and a taxi pulls over. (Except on a rainy day in Manhattan of course, but this is a nostalgic piece so there is no rain involved). In Paris it is either a wait in a long line, or a frantic dash from one street to the next hoping beyond hope to see an available taxi appear, and then agree to bring you to the address you give. (They sometimes refuse to go in certain directions, if it doesn’t seem convenient to them). Plus the NYC cabs are yellow and fabulous, and they are a haven of air conditioning in the Summer heat.
A Starbucks on every corner. yes. I am not ashamed to admit, I LOVE Starbucks! And I don’t care what all you coffee snobs say. I also like cute little non-chain coffee houses, and will frequent them. But when I am in NY… I like Starbucks. The smell upon entering, gives my brain a spike of that comfy, safe, home feeling. I love the plethora of Starbucks there. It’s literally on EVERY corner!
The anonymity of the Big Apple. No one bothers to stop and stare at you in the street or on the subway. It’s considered rude and invasive to stare at someone there. So people don’t. Here, you can stare, and other can stare at you. And that gets old after the novelty has worn off. And it does feel invasive. In New York you can have a a tantrum on the street and no one seems phased. You could be dressed in the most bizarre fashion and no one even bats an eye. You could stand on a soap box and preach out your opinions on all sorts of subjects and people will either stop to listen if they like your pitch or just walk on by as if nothing is going on. The ONLY thing that people will notice and be bothered by is PDA. Public Display of Affection. If you kiss your sweetheart too long in the street, eyebrows will be raised. In Paris, on the other hand is practically a requirement!