Wednesday, September 4, 2013

First Impressions of New York

I have finally made it to NY!  The City of Lights!  Been here for 24 hours from surviving 16 hours of flight and 12-hour time difference.  I have done a lot of sleeping considering I am in The City That Never Sleeps!  I feel so guilty falling in and out of consciousness since I arrived!  I slept at 5 in the morning til 1pm then slept again at 4-7pm!  I have to fix this sleeping pattern and start doing stuff in NY!

So after 24 hours, I decided to do a list of my first impressions of New York, so here it goes:

New York is like a giant movie set.  It is so BEAUTIFUL in New York! The architecture, the stores, the posters on the wall, the steam, the stairwell up an apartment (ala SATC), bricks, street lights, sculptures, road signs, fire escapes, trees... everything!!!  Everything seems to mean something artistically; like trees are strategically placed beside a street lamp so the shadows would cast beautifully on the road, it's so poetic.  I have given up taking photos of the buildings because all of them are beautiful!

photo from
New York is dirty.  Coming from Manila, I expected New York to be alot cleaner. haha.  There is just sooo much trash!  Don't get me wrong, the trash are organized and clean in black plastic bags, but they are just EVERYWHERE!  So much trash.

New York people are always on the phone.  No matter its the taxi driver, or the guy driving a truck, the UPS guy, the cashier from the store, a businessman walking on the street, the lady walking the dog, everyone is on the phone, ALL THE TIME!  Even my friend Chris Fed and I were NOcializing while eating haha

New York is delicious.  I have eaten at 3 places so far since I have been here, I have had a burger from 5 Napkins (USD 16), a Sabrett Hotdog (USD 4) on the street, and Katz's Pastrami Sandwich (USD 17) and everything has been wonderfully delicious (and expensive).  I have stopped converting my expenditures into peso.

New York is really diverse.  You cannot tell whether a person is a local or foreign.  It is such a melting pot of a city (that makes food so authentically delicious), that so far I have met people from Pakistan, England, Tunisia, Jamaica, China, France, Italy and Americans from other states all in just 24 hours.

New York roads are uneven.  Growing up in the Philippines and associating everything nice with the US, I thought NY roads would be less rocky haha.  I was surprised that our roads in Manila are comparable that of NY.

New York Subway is so hard to get used to.  It was not until I have spoken to a local who told me that the subway only goes North and South and none East to West that I understood why taking the train is almost the same as walking when I was heading towards Bleeker from 9th Street.  It is so difficult to find out where the stations are, the stairwells just magically appear on the side of the road.  There is no logo, or metro sign or anything.

New York is all about the parks.  I have yet to go to Central park and yet I have seen so many already! It's nice to have clean benches to sit on and eat a hotdog.  There are a lot of trees too!

New York is dog crazy.  There are soooo many dogs in New York!!  Someone is either walking their dog or someone is walking someone else's dog!  They are EVERYWHERE!  Therefore needless to say, there are also dog parks all around!

New York is tattoo friendly.  A LOT of people have tattoos!  Almost 85% of the people I see in the subway and walking in the street has tattoos! So awesome!

New York seems to have a bad reputation about safety.  90% of the people I have spoken to about New York has offered me some sort of safety precautions about the city.  Don't walk in the park at night; carry 20 dollar bills in your pocket so if someone robs you, you can just give them a 20;  Stay away from crazy people haha among other stuff.  I've lived in Manila my whole life and have never felt afraid even if I was in Caloocan or Tondo.  As a traveler, we should always be vigilant, apply common sense and trust your instincts anywhere in the world.

New York is friendly.  I guess I haven't been around yet, but so far, everyone has been really friendly.  Everyone takes time to say hello, chat a little bit, welcome me to the US, help me out when they saw me looking lost.


  1. Hi Candie :) a traveler tip to another traveler...since you are going to mexico...make sure you try their taqueria along the streets...its probably the most delicious one you'll try in the whole country. also if you get lost and don't know where to eat...always ask a local police man because apparently they know the best places to eat...AND ALSO!!!!! Mexico has a very looooooooooooong siesta time during lunch (apparently its their main meal of the day) so if you have other business to do...make sure you do it before 12noon or after 230pm!....cheers John Ngo

  2. The money conversion is difficult to stop. I've been living in Manila for 8 years now and I still tend to convert pesos into dollars. :p

  3. ga, you can spend a day in central park with your picnic mat, a book and some grub and wont feel you got bored. i even people watched there for a day and i luveeet!

  4. Hi I'm Heather! Please email me when you get a chance, I have a question about your blog! Heather.vonstjames(at) Thanks!!

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