Thursday, March 29, 2012

New York City Serenade

Before I write about our last day in New York, I want to mention some of the city's everyday details. Just little things we noticed that sometimes puzzled us, but mostly added to the experience in a good way.
Squirrels were to be found wherever there were trees. Only tourists paid any attention to them. They were completely ignored by New Yorkers.
Look how cute the one above is with that nut in it's mouth!

I love ivy and any climbing plants for that matter. I loved seeing ivy growing everywhere without restraint. So lovely.

Wisteria too.
Gardens along the sidewalks were all beautifully maintained.
And some gardens were wild and wonderful.

We appreciated even the smallest splash of colour.

New York embraces the seasons - preparing already for Halloween and Thanksgiving. This display was in a Pottery Barn store.
Starbucks. Our home away from home. "Fall" specialty : Pumpkin Spiced Latte. Tasted a lot better than it sounds!

When it rained, we were surprised at how many people wore gumboots/ wellingtons/ rain boots/ galloshes.
They were a real fashion statement.

New Yorkers love their dogs! We saw so many weird and wonderful breeds being walked around the city. They were permitted in stores and we even saw one in Tiffanys! On Broadway there was a shop devoted exclusively to dog's clothes and accessories. And, no, we never saw a doggy mess anywhere!

We were intrigued by the steam venting off (we guessed) the Subway at different times.

We loved  Fairway  and  Zabars which were both a few minutes walk from our apartment. Both supplied us with lovely, fresh, reasonably priced gourmet food. Our evening meal was usually pasta, sauce, baguettes and fruit from one of these stores.

Different names for food caused a little confusion.
If you asked for chips and dip, you received crisps and dip.
If you asked for lemonade, you received actual lemonade made with real lemons.
If you asked for tomato sauce you would receive a puzzled look until you remembered to ask for ketchup. Good times!
There really was a hot dog stand on almost every street corner.

We were determined to try all the different foods we'd seen mentioned on various American TV shows and movies. Junk food extravaganza! However, none of us put on weight and I actually lost two kilos while I was there. All that walking paid off!

This is how rubbish was disposed of from businesses and residential properties. No wheelie bins or dumpsters here. These massive piles of rubbish bags would appear on different evenings in different areas of the city and be magically gone by morning. Other than this nightly appearance, we never saw any litter on the streets.

Finally,  I would have to say the way New Yorkers crossed the street intrigued us more than anything.
Although most streets were marked with pedestrian crossings, we assumed that if the signal was red ( as above) this meant to stop walking immediately. The only people who ever stopped walking were tourists. New Yorkers kept on going seemingly regardless of oncoming traffic. We saw so many near misses it was really quite stressful!
All of these little daily details just enhanced the whole New York experience. It was just so interesting to witness how this big city varied from our city back home.



Anonymous said...

Lets go back now!!!!!! I heart N Y xoxo Even the humidity and the subway!

Manderley said...

I would sooo love to do that! xxxxx

librarygirl said...

This is also so wonderful EXCEPT FOR THE SQUIRRELS.

Guy the Gardener said...

Those little gardens around the bottoms of the street trees are very cool, cheers

Manderley said...

LG - Sorry, but I laugh whenever I recall your less than pleasurable experience with London squirrels!

GG - The little gardens were lovely. I was sorry I didn't take photos of some of the beautiful window boxes in the Upper West Side area. Everyone seemed to make the most of even the smallest green space.