Five Dos Of Living In Manhattan
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Five Dos Of Living In Manhattan

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Five Dos Of Living In Manhattan

So you wanna be a New Yorker? Don't we all? After all, as Queen Bey's famous hubby sang, New York is the "concrete jungle where dream are made of." 

New Yorkers are a special breed of human. Always in a hurry, they don't take crap from anyone or filter their thoughts whatsoever. 

If you're here, you're lucky. If you're not, you're wishing you were. There are countless reasons why people come to the city and only one reason they stay: it's incredible. Here are a few tips I've acquired over my short two months living in NYC.

DO take the time to figure out the subway system, at least to some extent. 

You might be thinking, "There's, like, Google for that," but trust me. People will respect you more if you walk with purpose, rather than stare at your iPhone in the middle of Times Square with a puzzled look on your face. Obviously, it's confusing. I'm not saying you should memorize every stop on every line. My advice is simply to figure out some areas of New York you find yourself visiting often, and memorize how to get there. Practice makes perfect, as I can now list every stop along the #6 train, without pause, after a short two months of living on the Upper East Side.

DO try to eat at as many restaurants and food carts as humanly possible. If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I have taken this 120 percent to heart.

New York food should be the eighth wonder of the world. You can find anything your stomach desires. From Halal food, bubble tea and Italian pastries to the famous Ramen burger, your taste buds will sing. As a side note, don't even bother telling people you lived in New York until you've had authentic NYC pizza and bagels.

Tip: on a free Saturday and an empty stomach, take the L train to Smorgasburg, a Brooklyn Flea Food Market with a whole list of food vendors. You will be overwhelmed by the amount of joy you will feel upon arriving.

DO take advantage of the word "free." I'm sure that you already do this, as a college student, but in NYC, this is more important than ever.

You and your wallet will soon discover that the city is expensive. It's well worth the time and effort needed to do a quick Google search of free food festivals coming up on the weekends or free tours of popular city attractions. 

Tip:There is this great tour company called Free Tours By Foot that offers a bunch of free tours around the city. I personally have taken a food tour of the East Village and a photography tour around Central Park. Being smart about where to spend your money will surely pay off when it comes time for back-to-school shopping.

DO look into the glory that is the city's Museum Mile and theater district.

You may be thinking, "Is she kidding me? Museums put people to sleep." If you are, you aren't entirely wrong. Take art for example. Personally, I have always had a hard time appreciating paintings. However, many of Manhattan's art galleries are far more than just that. It wouldn't hurt to search all of the current exhibits at the four main museums along museum mile: The Met, The Guggenheim, MoMA and The Whitney. I can almost guarantee you that at least one exhibit will spark an interest, and it'll give you an excuse to make a trip. I am beyond excited to see what the hype is surrounding Jeff Koons' 3D exhibit at The Whitney this coming Friday. 

Tip:If you're interning in the city, look into the deals that your company or organization offers for museums. A lot of companies sponsor free museum visits for their employees and interns! Again, notice the emphasis on "free."

In addition, if you think that theater isn't for you, you should seriously re-evaluate yourself as a person. Don't knock it before you try it. Look into the shows that are currently running on and off Broadway; I'm sure you'll be intrigued by something.There's good reason why thousands of people make trips to NYC specifically to see a musical or play. In fact, my family has made a point to see as many shows as our busy schedules allow for, including our most recent -- Carole King's, Beautiful. Additionally, I have seen two shows on my own: Chicago and Hedwig And The Angry Inch. Although both musicals were excellent, I will never ever stop raving about Neil Patrick Harris's role as Hedwig. It changed my life. 

Tip: if you're interested in seeing a Broadway or Off-Broadway show and you have a bit of time, look into TKTS, a company that sells same-day tickets, discounted between 30 percent and 50 percent. There are three locations, but the most popular is located in the heart of Times Square. For the small price of killing 45 to 60 minutes in a line, you can see a show for a very affordable price. 

DO understand that you're incredibly lucky to be in one of the world's greatest cities and DO take in as much of it as you can.

Before living here for the summer, I used to say, "I hate New York." I complained about its dirty streets (but really, people need to stop throwing their gum on the sidewalk, and we need a solution to the pigeon problem), its loud noises and its crazy people. But you know what, after fully immersing myself in all of its glory, I have learned to look past all of the bad. Sure, it smells. Yeah, it's called "the city that never sleeps" for a reason. True, I've seen old (and saggy) women walk around Times Square topless. Yet, it's truly amazing to walk along the streets of Union Square in search of pizza at 3 a.m. and find many buildings still lit up. You feel a sense of youth, of energy, whether you're 28 or 82. It's contagious, thrilling and brilliant.

In just two months of living in Manhattan, I've only gotten a small glimpse of all New York has to offer. However, its biggest gift to its residents and visitors is diversity, in every sense of the word. There is diversity in sites, from architecture like the Brooklyn Bridge or the Chrystler Building, to nature, like the Great Lawn and Turtle Pond in Central Park. There is diversity in people, from American-born business men to elderly Chinese immigrants and young NYU students. Lastly, there is diversity in value and possibility in the sense that each person who passes through Manhattan will find one or two reasons to come back.

To someone who hasn't spent much time in New York City, I sincerely hope this article inspires you to come. To someone who lives close to or in New York City, I hope this article inspires you to continue to explore. I know that I'll always feel like a city girl, no matter how far away from Manhattan I am.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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