Saturday, September 27, 2008

New York Moments: Part Two

A couple of days in New York is enough to soak in the atmosphere,enough to feel the beat of the town. The town felt safe even though the movement of people on Broadway in the Theater district where we landed was curb-to-curb people moving at a quick pace, crossing the streets anticipating the lights to change a minute ahead, darting between cars, taxis and all sorts of carts, bikes, and transport.

Everywhere, a curteous police force walked the streets, engaged with the citizens.

We walked to Rockefeller Center for a prearranged walking tour. The guide met us in the candy shop of NBC Center, and though he had four different language groups among the visitors he promptly ignored their needs for translation. It was a walking tour, around the block, examining the art and the history of Rockefeller Center. The visitors were confused and annoyed. A few of them left before the tour was over. I too was tempted.

The city is very accessible. Everything you want is right around the corner, including MacDonalds with music and videos blaring loudly a la Hard Rock Cafe.

We walked to see Jersey Boys, right down the street. And when we walked back home late in the evening, the city had not slowed down at all. Disneyland is a walk in the park compared to the pace of New York City.

People don't need to go to the gym to stay in shape. And they don't need to drive either. Subway, buses, taxis, bike taxis and horse carriages are all around, right where you need them.

On this first round visiting the city, I never looked up, too busy holding on to my balance and my wits, realizing that I was being bumped and pulled in a river of people that was constantly moving. Young and old, rich and poor, clean and dirty, tourists and residents were all pinballs in a giant game of darting and bumping and avoiding and keeping a lazer beam focus on their destinations.

I can see how people are pulled to this place that throbs with vitality and energy day and night.

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