Post # 77
Hey girl I was born and raised in NYC and I have had neighbors that I saw everyday and never spoke to. That’s pretty normal. Nobody isreally all that talkative. Now I like in the suburbs outside on Philadelphia and its completely different. Everyone talks to you!! It took awhile to get use too. Don’t worry about it and don’t take it personak
Post # 78
You’ve already gotten some great advice on this thread and this has given me quite the smile. I’m a NYer (6 years so far) and we are NOT MEAN. We’re just in our own little bubbles going to work and such because we don’t want to be bothered by people asking for change, handing out menus, selling discount haircuts, etc. And we generally don’t talk to/make eye contact with strangers for no reason. But if you asked me something, I would certainly answer and help you. But if you randomly started talking to me on the street, I would be like so sorry but I have to go to work/catch the bus/etc.
Groceries are more expensive here, I will say that. Food Emporium is notoriously overpriced. Try Trader Joe’s or Fairway. I personally love CTown, but that’s in my uptown neighborhood, and nothing for you to go out of the way for. Central Park is fine…even at night LoL. I run there by myself at night ALL THE TIME. In general, Manhattan is safe all over.
And unless you have two heads, no one is staring at you on the street. And even then, we wouldn’t stare probably. I can’t remember the last time I saw something/someone on the street even worth mentioning. That’s how jaded I have become 😉
ETA: KatNYC is right. On the UES, you may be encountering nannies, not moms.
PM me if you want any specific city advice. We’re fellow Upper East Siders 😉
Post # 79
You’re welcome to visit here! Most people would smile at you, and during the summer at 65F you might not see many sundresses, but when it first hits that temp after winter everyone will be wearing them!
Post # 80
Food Emporium is super overpriced. Go to Fairway, it’s the best! Grocery stores in less wealthy neighborhoods are actually pretty cheap, as is Chinatown. You can get really cheap and fresh veggies and fruit on the street.
Each neighborhood in NYC has a different vibe and you just have to explore. I hate the Upper East Side but love the West Side, or the East Village. If people aren’t friendly on the street, it’s party a defense mechanism. By my job, someone on the street being friendly usually means they are trying to sell comedy tickets, rip off hair salon coupons, etc. On the other hand, I always try to be friendly to tourists who look lost. Just don’t treat the subway entrances like a stroll in the park. Then people get nasty.
Post # 81
All of you have been SO helpful. I’m putting together an itinerary based on all of these suggestions. I’m trying to realize that the California way isn’t the ONLY way. I think the people who told me to be more openminded are right. I have to be very independent here… I’m not really used to that. I’m used to finding an ally everywhere I go. It’s weird not having someone to talk to. I can’t remember the last time I went somewhere new and didn’t start talking to the people near me.
My most recent struggle is hailing a cab. Ugh… That is a torturous activity. I hate it with a fiery passion. It’s so humiliating! Every time a cabbie shakes his head and drives past me, I feel like I just got rejected. What’s the trick? I see people just walking into the street, holding up their hand, and a cab magically pulls up in seconds. I want to do this. Some guy said I need to hold up my hand like I mean it. I’m in the STREET. Shouldn’t that be an indication that I mean it? When I see someone in the street, I assume they are either hailing a cab or committing suicide, BOTH of which should cause a cabbie to stop.
I want to try this amazing New York pizza everyone is talking about. Now THAT is one think that I’m sure will be waaaaay better than in California. @Allergicbee- Is Artichoke Pizza made with artichokes or is that just the name? Is that a good place to have a real New York Pizza experience?
I do think it’s awesome that everyone puts on actual clothes to go out. I went to Duane Reade and not one of the customers came in with Ugg boots and pajamas on. I respect the effort. That’s like the official shopping uniform back home. 🙂
I know I must sound like the world’s biggest idiot but I assure you that in real life I am fully functioning, competent woman. I’m just SO out of my element here and have no one else I can ask. Thanks for bearing with me and offering help. It really is impacting my view of the city.
Post # 82
@jayebaby: So do you not hold your hand up at all and just stand in the street? Also, you need to make sure they have their light on, and it’s helpful when you’re standing in the direction that you’re going (although not necessary) So if you’re going uptown, standing on the uptown side/block.
Also, and NYC moms could help more here, it may be because you have your baby with you. I remember hearing that there’s something with babies and cabs, like you’re supposed to have a car seat, or there’s some weird rule or something.
Artichoke pizza is REALLY good. You can get a slice with actual artichokes on it, but they have other flavors. There are also tons of great pizza places on the Upper East side like Delizia and Gotham.
Post # 83
@jayebaby: You have to know what the cab lights mean. I only put my hand up for cabs that I know are available.
You want a cab where the middle (where the numbers/letters are) is lit up but the sides (where it says “off duty”) are not. If nothing is lit up, it means that the cab is already engaged.
Also, make sure you are trying to hail from a place where there’s an easy spot for the cabby to pull over and pick you up.
Are you usually out with lots of bags or a stroller? Lots of bags sometimes signify a fare to the airport and a lot of cabbies don’t want to do that. If you have a stroller and are in an area where they can’t pull over easy, they may not want to deal with the hassle of folding and storing the stroller in the trunk while being honked at by all the cars behind him.
Artichoke Pizza is great. They have 4 types of pizza:
Artichoke (which is like spinach and artichoke dip on a pizza)
Margarita (tomato, mozzarella, parmesan, and basil)
Sicilian (square deeper dish, lots of sauce, basil, parmesan, and mozzarella) this is my favorite
It’s not quite your typical NY slice but it is SO good.
Best of luck! NYC really is a great city, it just takes some getting used to and you have to be confident in your actions. Walk confidently with your head up, hail a cab with your hand in the air and arm straight. Look the cabby in the eye and be forceful with your motion.
Post # 84
@jayebaby: I know what you mean, I’m from NC, and my first time to NYC was a huge culture shock. My Fiance laughed at me and told me not to make eye contact and leave people alone. But honestly, you’ll get used to it hun! 🙂
Post # 85
@hotchildinthecity- I hold my hand up. I do take the baby with me but we checked the laws and saw that she doesn’t need a carseat here. I do take a stroller but I collapse it while I hail. I didn’t pay attention to the lights but I will next time.
Post # 86
@jayebaby: Yeah, so it seems like it’s a combination of the baby/stroller and the lights. Especially if you’re catching cabs during rush hour, at night, or at change of shifts, it could be tough to get one. KatNYC gave a great explanation for the lights.
Also, some cabbies are just weird about taking kids (and subsequently drunk people) because they don’t want anyone puking in the cab! 😉
Post # 87
@jayebaby: Here’s the secret to hailing a cab:
- Taxis have a light on top. The light has the serial number of the taxi in the middle, and the words “OFF DUTY” to each side.
- If the light in the middle is lit but NOT the side off duty lights, the taxi is empty and it should stop for you if you hail it.
- If no lights are it, the taxi is occupied.
- If the center and “off duty” side lights are lit it means the taxi is on its way back to the garage at the end of its shift. You can try to hail it, since the driver is allowed to pick up one fare that is headed in the same direction as the garage. (This is the only case where a driver can refuse to take you since you’re not going in the same direction.)
Lastly, the artichoke pizza place has all different types of pizza, the artichoke slice is super amazing (the artichoke is like so soft and melted in with the cheese that you almost can’t even tell it’s there); but they are also known for their crab slice and marguerita and sicilian pizza! We go to the one near Union Square, and always take friends there from out of town (to impress them of course :)) when they come to visit- the pizza is so good a company in california I believe tried to replicate the recipe and is selling it frozen in supermarkets under the artichoke name (with their permission of course, butttt, it’s not the REAL thing!)- you MUST MUST go! plus union square is fun!
Post # 88
Here’s an image to help. The closest cab in the picture is “off duty”. They might take a fare, but most likely will not. The next cab is available (see how the middle is lit up but the edges aren’t):
Also, at different times of days the shifts change. It is nearly impossible to get a cab when the shifts are changing.
I know one shift change is right around 5pm so it’s really hard to get a cab then.
Also, if all else fails, you can usually get a hotel door man to hail a cab for you.
Post # 89
@KatNYC2011: Threadjack but they’re actually changing the law so that you’re either off duty or on duty. They can’t do that weird thing where maybe they’re off duty but maybe they’ll take you. Thank goodness – that was so confusing!
Post # 90
@thegoogler88- Oh, it must have been more of a shock for you! Everyone I know from NC is so open, warm, and helpful. One of my best friends is from there and she said adjusting to LA was difficult because she found Californians to be not so friendly. I can imagine that NYC would be even more of a shock! 🙂
Post # 91
@hotchildinthecity: Thank goodness! That all lights on but off duty thing is so confusing!
In London it’s easy, if the light is on the cab is available, if the light is off, it’s not. However, cabbies here are not required to take any fare. You have to tell them where you are going before you get in (they don’t unlock the doors until you tell them where you are going). I’ve never had a cabbie refuse to take me, but apparently here they can do that (unlike NYC).