Six years ago, when I first moved to New York City, I blogged about 10 things worth stumbling into here. This weekend, I spent three full days in New York visiting friends again and I thought perhaps it was time to update my list. Here’s the new and improved 10 things worth stumbling into, now that I no longer thing commuter traffic is fun.
Tourists are amusing. Not a highlight of New York by any means, but amusing to watch. This weekend I saw a man with a point and shoot camera, taking pictures of the cupcake shop I was in. I took a picture too, but with my phone. And without the tour guide book in hand.
Monuments are fun because they are usually unexpected. They speak of history and times gone by, of lives that were lived and commemorated, sometimes in the exact location where the monument now stands. For example, there is a plaque on the wall of my alma mater commemorating George Washington’s Battle in Harlem at that exact location, which is now a massive university. Cool.
8. Iconic New York
In my opinion, real New York City is not the same as New York in the movies. But sometimes I run into things that I recognize from movies, and that’s fun too.
It is very entertaining to watch filming happen. Not entertaining enough to just stand there and watch, but sit in a park nearby with a friend, yes. What amuses me the most I think is how many times they run the same scene and how they have to work around the city and its inhabitants.
6. Urban Art
Coming from Indiana, I was pleasantly surprised by public art. Now living in Pennsylvania, I miss it.
5. Performing Artists
My favorite so far- clarinet and guitar duo in central park. My least favorite- old men in the subway singing songs I don’t know off key while shaking their tip jar. Also, the act where 5 guys gather a crowd and hype it up to do 5 jumps. When you’ve seen it once, you’ve seen it a million times.
4. A Well Placed Tree
I am not a person that needs ‘nature’ in my everyday life, with the exception of trees. A nicely lined street, yes please!
My friends in Pennsylvania laugh at me when I talk about nature in New York. It is ironic I suppose, but even cities have sunsets and season changes.
2. City Views
I’m not saying I’ll NEVER get tired of seeing the skyline or tall buildings of the city, but I haven’t so far. (I wrote this sentence in 2012 and I’m using it again because it’s still true.)
The city is ultimately about people, which is both a pro and a con. In the city you see people as they are, at their worst and best, walking through life beside you. Children with their parents after school, millennials out for drinks, commuter weariness, youthful dramatics, it’s all spread before you, no filter.
My absolute favorite thing to run into in New York is people I know. I have ran into coworkers several times, as well as out of state tourists. When someone calls you by name on the streets of New York, you know the world really is as small as they say.