(continued from Part I)
6) The People of New York
Artists, blue-collar-workers, businessmen, food industry servers, students, legal employees, illegal immigrants – if you haven’t seen it here than it is likely not to exist. The city has a great vibe for a very good reason: Because so many culturally different people come here with their different ideas of how to make it here or how to enrich this city in their own terms. It is lovely to walk through the streets and see different occurrences on almost every street corner. While you inhale campus air around the NYU buildings, you are drawn into unique music tunes by a singer playing on the streets of the Village. Or you see the
show-off- rich cruising the streets in the Meatpacking District or Upper West Side. The city’s diversity is unlimited and it is so in a good way, I have to say.
7) The Boroughs…
… are about as unique as this city by itself. Manhattan as a main workers’ hub, a financial capital, a commuter’s destination. Brooklyn as a culturally diverse neighborhood with its uprising, hip areas, its dangerous ghetto blocks, its beaches, and the most populated borough aside from the Island. Queens as a family-oriented place with cheaper rent than anywhere else, and with its great ethnic diversity, which adds up to the cultural melting pot. The Bronx, still home to more people from the Bronx than from outside, but gaining a better reputation from day to day and home to the biggest zoo in this area. Not to forget Staten Island, the most isolated community, only accessible through a 20-min-ferry-ride. Once you end up in Staten Island, you won’t crawl away from there anytime soon. This is pretty much one of the main reasons I have avoided Isolata for the most part. Great for an upper scale family life and people who can afford to have a
sassy, bulky car. Brooklyn is really one of my favorites and this might be the reason why I live here, but I cannot shy away from all the cultural activities going on there and sometimes even its night life. Every borough offers different things the others might not have and New York is wide open to explore.
8) Freedom, Inspiration & Independence
New York makes you feel independent to a great degree. You don’t need a car, you have the subway system. If you don’t like one venue, you can move on to the next. Broken friendships, shattered relationships? This city has 8 million people to make you forget. There are downsides to this, too, of course, but I am not discussing these now. The City has given me this great feeling of deciding on my own what I want to make of my time here and this is worth a lot. Without it I wouldn’t have stayed for so long and I am still here, discovering my limits, trying out new things, creating myself. The unlimited amount of options over here can make you crazy dizzy at first but they also give you opportunity to move on, to find some new sides about yourself which you weren’t able to discover elsewhere. Every time I go to an area I know I see sides of it I didn’t pay attention to the last time. If you went on a date with someone at a certain spot and are afraid to return because of nostalgic feelings, this is not going to happen over here. There is just too much change to even develop something coming close to it. In a good way, that is.
I believe that this city symbolizes a new beginning more strongly than elsewhere and that the American Dream, if it still exists, can be accomplished here more than anywhere else. No one knows you. You have to pave your own way, have to make your own connections, and have to work hard to show where your talents and passions lie. This is a beautiful opportunity to create what is hidden inside of you.
9) Travel Opportunities
No, New York is not the center of the world, even though it gives its best to make you want to believe this occasionally. But its three airports surrounding the metro area sure make it easy to travel to destinations all over the world. Their names are Newark, JFK, and La Guardia, and they lead to pretty much anywhere in the US without having to switch flights plus they surely lead to Europe without too many complications. Disregard air travel, though, as you can discover beautiful towns around New York at a low cost: Hop on the bus to Washington DC, Philly, and Boston, and, if you’re brave enough, you can even make it up to Montreal or Toronto in roughly 8 hours of drive. Because this city has so much competition going on, it is quite easy to find good deals when deciding on leaving. And I rather suggest you leave on occasion, for the city is only as beautiful as you can stand it. Summer getaway packages to Long Island or the Jersey shores and upstate New York such as Catskills offer travel at convenient prices. Winter deals to Miami, Jamaica, or the Caribbean Islands make the cold months over here endurable. Yes, this city has options; you just have to prepare for them!
10) The Memories Created
Well, surely you create memories no matter if you’re in New York or anywhere else. I just have the impression that the experiences I had over here have impacted me more and maybe even changed me in a more extreme way than any other city had been capable of doing this before. Fashion Show in February, the nation’s largest Food Show in July, being an actress in a music video, attending press events, surfing at Far Rockaway, discovering Harlem’s seedy areas… After only three months of being here I knew no other city in Europe had given me this vast impression of achieving anything anytime you want. The things to do here are unlimited. During only one day you go through a full array of emotions: From tiredness when waking up, over anger because of rude Subway people, over happiness because of a random smile on the streets, over frustration over the city’s policies, to wisdom at the end of the day. And I’m not the only one going through these stages, I swear!
New York will never leave you unimpressed. Love it, hate it, or do both, but you will always FEEL some sort of emotion going on inside of you.