To continue my mini-series of posts about moving to NYC, I had considered theming this blog as well. However, I have my list of things I've learned, and they are all over the map. So, you'll have to deal with it! Take it as a mini-lesson of NYC living...things are random and you must deal! Ha!
1- 90% of people living in NYC are not originally from here. And that doesn't matter. Most towns in the US have this pride factor. "Our family has been here since my great great Aunt Betty in 1899!". Yeah, OK, great. Sure, there are the people who have never left the island of Manhattan, but in reality? Not a bragging point. We all originated somewhere else, and migrated to the Big Apple. That's what makes this city so culturally diverse and great! Own your heritage. It's part of your story, and NYC is a place so eclectic that your story will fit right in!
2- It's really OK to wear long underwear. No really, it is. First off, no one will know you have it on. Secondly, I promise you that dress pants and/or jeans will NOT keep you warm on a 20 degree day with the wind howling through tall buildings. So, unless you want to be so numb that you may not realize if you've wet yourself...WEAR LONG UNDERWEAR!
3- Always have cash. Always. Cash only places in NYC are actually very common. And no one wants to pay the $2.50 ATM charge to get a $2.00 slice of pizza. So really, make sure you've got at least a $20.00 bill on you...or lots of quarters.
3- If you work in a secure building, on your first day they are liable to confiscate your pepper spray. Best to just learn Taekwondo instead. And it's probably more effective than the can at the bottom of your purse...
4- If there is a clearing when waiting for a walk sign...just cross, but make sure to walk quickly. Especially on the one-lane, one-way streets, you could waste hours waiting for the walk sign. It's OK. Just make sure you've looked. And also, watch for bicycles. Those idiots are more dangerous than cars, because they refuse to follow traffic laws and rarely pay attention to pedestrians. Can you sense my bitterness towards them? It's there...
5- If you pay over $12.00 for a manicure...you've been ripped off.
6- You're mood is likely intensified just because of your surroundings. Be aware of that. If you're stressed, getting on the subway can really set you off. If you're sad, being surrounded by millions of people you don't know can add to the depression. If you're angry, you'll run into several more idiots. BUT: if you're happy, you'll notice more joy in the city than anywhere else! If you're giggly, you'll see funny outfits, statues, or signs that will keep you laughing! If your curious, there is always a new place to go! There is really no way to avoid the fact that NYC can intensify your moods. You just need to be conscious of the mood you are in, and make sure you have ways of dealing, breathing, and bringing yourself down (or up) to a manageable range.
7- Dishwashers, In-building laundry, Central AC, counter space, closets, more than 2 windows: ALL LUXURIES. Really. And for those luxuries? You'll fork out the dough! You can live without them, I promise. Window units and fans are excellent and I guarantee half the stuff you store in your closet you NEVER use...if you are even aware it's there! Essentially, know your own priorities, then make concessions and move on. My priorities? Location and a secure building. Storage space, size, floor plan, dishwasher? Doesn't matter. Want more space? Don't expect to live anywhere near NYC, so hope you are OK with long commutes. Can't have everything....unless you make in the 7 figure range.
8- Be open to the experiences from day to day. People watch! Enjoy the random mariachi bands on the subway! Detour thru the park on your walk home! Pay attention to the different colors that light up the Empire State Building! Go to festivals! Chat with the person next to you at the cafe. If you're going to go through the hassle of living in NYC....then LIVE IN NYC! (But, please, don't live in Queens...)
A note to my lovely, faithful readers: I promised you something that I missed in my last blog. I've delivered. First one to tell me what it is can give me a topic to blog about...