This was my fourth time visiting the Big Apple, but this time my friends and I definitely jammed so much into four days. Yes, we did all the touristy treks, but we also crammed in some authentic New Yorker-like activities. Like sitting on paint-peeling stoops and ordering cheap, Chinese take-out.
But I also learned some tidbits about New York after all our crazed ventures:
1. Brooklyn isn’t that scary at night. Since we’re a bunch of broke college students, there wasn’t any room to splurge on chic hotel rooms in Manhattan. So we all stayed in this awesome apartment (via HomeAway.com) in Brooklyn, a few blocks away from the subway. I’m not gonna lie,I thought it looked a bit rough at first, with some shady characters walking around at night and some run-down stores. Then my boyfriend pointed out a Jaguar parked on the side of the street. “See, if they feel safe enough to park their car there at night, we should be fine.” And yes, we came back home at like 2am some nights, mug-free.
2. Getting harassed by a probable crack-whore is a bit enlightening. We were on the E train when some lady with barely any teeth and almost no hair on her head, pointed at us as she walked off and said, “You all look cheap, you look like Payless! Your iPods are worth more than what you’re wearing!” After she left, we just looked at each other and laughed. Thanks for the style-check, meth head.
3. “My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend” by Her Space Holiday is an incredibly addictive song. We all watched the newly on Broadway play, Next Fall, and the closing song was this jeweled tune. And whatdoyaknow, Her Space Holiday is from Austin!
4. Walking up the Empire State Building steps will leave you winded. Well, at least I was afterwards! It was actually only 155 steps but damn, I need to work out. Of course, the view was amazing. [And the top of the tower was all lit up green for St. Patty’s Day!]
5. It doesn’t hurt to have a map. Not going to lie, we got lost a whole bunch of times. And at first we all didn’t want to expose our true tourist colors, but when we finally realized we had walked about 8 blocks without knowing where we were going, we gave in. And this subway trip-planning site was sooo helpful.
6. If you’re a legit New Yorker, wear dark colors. Seriously, I feel like the majority of people I saw were all wearing long-sleeved, dark clothes. Either black, gray or dark blue. My bright pink shirt made me stick out.
7. Lady Liberty is a man-man, baby. I didn’t notice it until a friend said that The Statue of Liberty has such manly arms. Then I realized she definitely resembles Liam Neeson. Weird.
8. Free street shows are the shit. We watched these city acrobat street performers after getting back from Ellis Island and they were amazing [and I donated $1]. And also the subway singers had some of the best voices i’ve heard in awhile.
9. It’s hard to be in NYC and under 21. Since none of us were of age yet, we spent the majority of Friday night trying to find a normal club to mingle around. But all we saw on yelp were house-music clubs that were 18+, and none of us felt like being stuck sweating in an European raving atmosphere.
10. Weather in mid-March is the best. NYC is so effing huge. And within every nook and cranny there was something we wanted to check out, regardless of how far we had to walk or take the train. So thank God the weather was perfect: 60-70 degrees, sunshine gleaming with wafts of wind cooling our tired-out bodies.