Friday Five: What I Love about NYC

this week’s Friday Five linkup makes my lil heart so happy, because i get to gush about one of my favorite things in the whole wide world: my city. which, in my biased view of the world, happens to be the very best city of all the cities that ever were. (okay, so i haven’t been to all of them, but mine’s pretty darn wonderful!)

ONE: Everything.

annnnnd we’re done here.

sike. (or is it psych? i’m going with the first.) but seriously, that’s one of the best things about NYC: it has something for everyone. and if you’re the outdoorsy type and don’t like being stuck in the city, we have beaches an hour away by train and mountains to hike an hour the other way. you’d be hard pressed to want something here that you can’t find: any type of food, any type of clothing, any type of theater, any type of job, any type of bar, any type of person. i really love that about my city: if you can imagine it, you can find it. (except maybe unicorns. i’m still on the hunt.)

TWO: Diversity. i grew up in a rather non-diverse part of NY state, and i feel soooooo blessed to live in one of the most diverse cities in the world. i mean, my friend group alone is a testament to that: we’re Irish-American, Canadian, Russian Jewish, Thai, Vietnamese, and as Southern Belle as they come. as someone who values people and relationships over everything else in my world, i feel so incredibly fortunate to meet so many people from all over the world and country and hear their stories and learn about different cultures first-hand. it’s incredible.

two Asians, a Jew and an Irish girl walked into a wine bar…photo
have i mentioned that i’m surrounded by Canadians at all times? & how much i love them, eh?friends
THREE: Speakeasies. if you’ve been reading RTA for a bit, then you might know that i am a huge fan of these Prohibition-style bars and am on a mission to hit as many as i can. i love the cozy, dim-lit atmospheres; the oft-clandestine entrances; the “mixologist” drink menus; the throwback vibes.

Photosome great speakeasys (or sort-of speakeasys, with the same type of vibe) i’ve been to, in case you’re in NYC and into this scene:

Employees Only
Bathtub Gin
Death & Co
Little Branch
Lantern’s Keep (drinks pictured above)
The Back Room
The Dead Rabbit (not really a speakeasy, but similar historical concept & awesome place so i’m adding it)

there are a bunch i haven’t been to that i really want to hit, like Raines Law Room and Dear Irving and Milk & Honey and Angel’s Share…good to have things to work toward, amiright? πŸ™‚

FOUR: Theater. i don’t go as often as i’d like, but when i see a show, i love it. i did musical theater in high school and college and so often wish i’d pursued theater with a dogged passion, because i love it so, so much. i live right in the theater district and really would like to make more of a point to see shows, especially when there are so many ways to get discounted tickets. i made it to a record two shows in December — Fuerza Bruta Wayra and Once — and both were absolutely amazing and gave me that “transcending my every day life” feeling, which i just love.

FIVE: The different neighborhoods. i can only speak for Manhattan, as i’m not very familiar with the other boroughs, but i just love how the different neighborhoods of Manhattan each have their own personalities and vibes (i totally overuse that word but it’s the one i want). the West Village is my fave, with its quaint little streets and lovely brunch places and wine bars and tucked-away-out-of-the-craziness feel; then there’s the gritty, hipster-ish sceney vibe of the Lower East Side and all its late-night glory; the lovely brownstone-and-blossom streets of Chelsea, and the hip “scene” of the Meatpacking District, with its clubs and high-end shops and boozy brunches; the grungier, so-many-little-places-to-go-all-squished-together feel of Hell’s Kitchen; the cleaner, wider-streeted, stroll-around-and-enjoy-yourself atmosphere of the Upper West Side; the hustle-and-bustle, wait-is-that-a-celebrity, i-think-they’re-filming-a-movie-down-that-street electricity in the air in SoHo; the cool, raw, darkish casualness of the Bowery.

every neighborhood has a distinct look and feel, and i love how there are always so many things to catch your eye and places to stumble upon and drop into on a whim. i can’t imagine ever getting bored here, or tired of this city i feel so utterly blessed to call home.



25 thoughts on “Friday Five: What I Love about NYC

  1. Rock and I were JUST discussing today all of the great things NYC opened my eyes to. In the midst of the news today it was refreshing to talk about. I went to college in Harlem and was one of the few white girls in any of my classes. And one of my favorite subletters was a Muslim Irani. The place is just brimming with culture and things to learn. And I love how you can drive 30 minutes out of NYC and feel like you are in another world…..

    • i love all the places you can get to so easily just outside of the city, too, which are so NOT city-like! the beaches and little towns and orchards and places to hike…so great. and much-needed. πŸ™‚

  2. NYC, she’s a helluva town. Whenever I’m in a New York state of mind, I sometimes watch movies where NYC is basically one of the characters in the film. It’s not the same as being there, but it helps when you’re halfway across the country.

  3. I LOVE NYC!! I wish I could live there!! Just need to convince my husband!! Hehe!! πŸ™‚ When I walk around the city, my eyes light up and I truly feel like I’m in heaven. The food is just amazing! I love all the cool dance studios and classes! I’ve attended a few! I gotta move there! Yep, I do! Happy Friday! Have a fun weekend!! XOXO

  4. Those are some amazing things about the NYC Shawna!!! You really make a hard sell for NYC even for this guy who grew up outside of DC πŸ™‚ I love the diversity aspect!!! Melting pot cities are a beautiful thing, you can learn much from them πŸ™‚

    • haha my associations for your images: 1) Central Park: picnic w/ mimosas in Sheep’s Meadow. 2) kids w/ parents: how they raise kids here without dying of exhaustion or poverty beats the H out of me. and, do they bring those kids to bars? 3) magical alley: if they lead to speakeasys, then YES. yes.

  5. I’d love to go to NYC just to explore all of the jazz clubs and wine bar type places you talk about!! Sounds so Sex and the City fabulous! AND yes…I love the diversity/melting pot that it seems to be. TX can be very segregated honestly (but I still love it, just used to it.)
    My cousins live in NY so I must go pay them a visit soon!! And then maybe we can finally have that meet up! πŸ™‚

  6. I love the quote at the end! I love nyc! Its one of my favorite places in the world! If i could live there i would. Everything is great, the food, the people, the sports, theatre, cebtral park, the five boroughs(ive spent time in all of them and love each one) and mostvof all the love and pride to be a part of nycπŸ‡ΊπŸ‡ΈπŸ—½

  7. I love NYC! My husband, Andrew, and I went last January to see Jersey Boys. Andrew had never been to NYC or saw Broadway musical, and he loved both! We’re actually going to see Wicked this evening here in NC (and I’m really siked/psyched about it!)

  8. “ONE: Everything.
    annnnnd we’re done here.”
    —-hahaha yes!! That’s exactly how I feel about this city. I truly mean it when I say that I fall more in love with this city every single day. Sometimes I wonder how I’ll ever be able to live anywhere else. I know this may change but my goodness NYC has stolen my heart ❀ How lucky are we to live here!?!?

  9. NYC is amazing – I love all these things! But being from the suburbs, I love having NYC within visiting distance whenever I want and not actually LIVING in the city. I’m a quiet, introverted type and sometimes the hustle and bustle of the city is a little much for me πŸ™‚

    • i can appreciate that, too — my parents live a few hours away on a lake, and i love love love going home (and do every month), so it’s great to have the best of both worlds!

  10. I love this! I go back and forth wanting to visit NYC since I’ve never been, but I think it all comes down to visiting when you know people who can show you the REAL city. I love meeting people of different backgrounds and ideologies too and Chicago is pretty good at taking care of that, so I can only imagine how diverse NYC is! I didn’t know that there were mountains anywhere near the city! No clue. That’s awesome!

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