How to Live Like a New Yorker!
Living in New York isn’t the same as visiting, and becoming a New Yorker is no easy feat. But once you have been a resident of this amazing city, even for a short time, you will never be the same. To paraphrase the iconic song about New York, ”If you can make it here, you’re gonna make it anywhere.”
The first step to becoming a real New Yorker and not some day-tripper catching a glimpse of Gotham is to do things the way real New Yorkers do. Here are a few New York hacks to get you on the right track.
When in Rome (or in this case, NYC)
Take a cue from the locals, especially when it comes to the everyday grind. Getting around is a perfect example—once you learn this insider secret, you are well on your way to understanding why this is the coolest city on the planet.
EVERYONE takes the subway. Do you think all those movie scenes where they pan across a row of assorted personalities strap-hanging on the Number 4 came from somebody’s imagination? Think again! Jump onboard this microcosm melting-pot of humanity from Fulton Street Station, and you will instantly become a part of it.
Just try not to gawk.
Want to be the person who knows exactly where the subway doors are going to open? Time Out New York offers this tip: look down at the yellow caution stripe on the platform and the place where it’s the dirtiest is where the doors will open! Want to know exactly when the train will be pulling into your station? Download the Subway Time app!
This may sound like common sense, but for may be news to the uninitiated: don’t stand near the edge of the platform until the train is in the station and don’t lean out and look down the tunnel for your train!
Get Your Bearings
When you first come up from the subway, a confusing scene will have you reaching for your phone GPS, but don’t do it. Look up and around instead. Use iconic landmarks such as the Empire State Building or the Freedom Tower to help orient yourself.
They’re not in sight? Take a cue from all the confident New Yorkers who are purposefully striding one way or another—and just go! Look at the street number where you start from and when you get the end of the next block, check out the next street sign. You will know with certainty if you are headed in the right direction or the wrong direction. In one block (about three minutes), you will have found your bearings, corrected yourself if necessary, and you will have done this without appearing for one second to be a tourist.
Someone may even ask you for directions!
Take a basic New York City street map of Manhattan before you ever arrive in New York City and study it from the comfort of your home. You’ll see the beauty and logic of NYC streets; how Broadway diagonally divides the city and approximately where it crosses each avenue. You’ll have the image of this map etched into the backs of your eyelids and be amazed at how intuitively you can navigate the city once you arrive!
And watch the daily forecast for rain and bring with or buy two umbrellas in advance. You’ll either lose one or end up giving it to a friend.
Explore the Hoods
Real New Yorkers are always on the go, always looking for something new, and they know their city is perfectly set up to accommodate them. Go 20 blocks in any direction, maybe less, and enter a new neighborhood, a different world.
One spectacular way to explore the city is to walk the entire length of Manhattan along Broadway—it’s 13 miles long and will take you through virtually every neighborhood you’ve heard of and plenty you haven’t. A couple of filmmakers even documented this walking tour—check out their favorite spots along the route!
Walk the Brooklyn Bridge at Night
Nothing beats walking across the Brooklyn Bridge at night. There’s a wide pedestrian path, scores of fellow walkers and bikers, and a surreal magic to the entire experience. For added adventure, ride the NYC Ferry back to Wall Street—last departure on weekends is 9:58 p.m.
Buy a Bagel and Coffee from the Corner Deli
Don’t waste precious time in the morning microwaving your breakfast! Any bagel you grab in this city is going to be good, and you will find the really great bagel spots quickly (just look for a line out the door!). Thrillist has named the best bagels according to neighborhood, including the financial district. Deli coffee isn’t gourmet, but somehow it grows on you. And “regular” means with cream and two sugars. Plus, deli egg sandwiches are just short of awesomeness.
Take Your Friends Along
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