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Manhattan – I don’t need a MetroCard, I can walk…

Bronx and Upper Manhattan…said the tourist returning from NYC back in 2012. “Ah, you can walk the whole island if you have 1 h 30 min to spare” – gushed my boyfriend then, since he had no clue whatsoever of the traps the city secretly places in your way. So yeah, that’s not true. Whoever heard that from me in 2012/2013 should now find out that you have to have extremely good shoes and a wonderful weather to even consider walking more than 40 blocks at once in Manhattan.

Since some of you may not know how the streets of Manhattan actually work, here’s a short intro into their secrets: almost all the streets are horizontal on the island and are numbered, whereas almost all the avenues are vertical on the island and are numbered as well. Therefore you almost always hear terms such as “52nd and 10th”, meaning the girl lives on the corner of 52nd Street and 10th Avenue. That means if you live on 72rd and 3rd, you have to walk down 20 blocks and 7 avenues, so…not much, if you would look it up on a map and not check how long it takes for you to get from point A to point B. That’s what we thought when visiting just a very small portion of NY in August, 2012. That is soooo far from the reality I live in now, in February 2014.

Maybe it’s the cold weather. Maybe it’s the shoes, since I’m wearing booties instead of sneakers. But most certainly, it’s the fact that we didn’t get to explore NY as much when we saw it for the first time. Now I feel as if I’m zooming in on a map previously downloaded in my mind and suddenly start to see all the details I missed out on two years ago. Those details can’t be seen in the 50 minutes it normally takes to get from 52nd to 85th. Another three days are certainly not enough to get my own map updated properly. Might need a lifetime to figure out this city and I’m almost certain that I won’t have that time to spare for it.

So to speed up things, I decided to refill my MetroCard and just go with the flow (although that means sometimes having to be less fancier than I’ve imagined my post-SATC Manhattan experience). Go with the blue lines heading uptown, for that matter. Cause those booties aren’t taking me back to 10th Avenue on their own.

(There’s a lot where that came from and there’s more coming up…)

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