I was in New York City today for work.
I’ve gone to New York a decent amount for work, and less frequently for fun, in the last decade. I’ve done Times Square, Central Park, Broadway, shopping, fun restaurants, and dive bars.
I still REALLY don’t like New York.
Does that make me a horrible person? I almost put that sentiment on Facebook while sitting in grimy Penn Station tonight but thought better of it when I pictured some of the outraged comments I’d get, especially from my many friends who live in the city. It seems like it’s not only un-American to dislike New York, but positively un-Earthian. Doesn’t everyone long to visit New York?
Maybe, but I’m not one of them. When lots of my college friends were excitedly planning their moves downstate, I looked north and south on 95, at Boston and Washington. When D.C. friends were hopping Megabuses for $10 to visit Manhattan on weekends, I hopped planes to Manhattan, Kansas – the little apple. If it were up to me, I’d go a long way out of our way to avoid driving through the Bronx on our way home to Massachusetts, because I dread the idea of breaking down on the Cross-Bronx Expressway, with its lack of essential items like BREAKDOWN LANES.
It’s not that I’m not a city person – as much as I’m a child of the ‘burbs, I can easily spend days wandering around D.C., Boston, Chicago, Toronto, London – you name the place and I’ll wander. But New York has always seemed too…something…to me. Too crowded, maybe. Too dirty. Too overwhelming. I just can’t get my arms around it.
Or maybe the answer is that I’m just not a Manhattan-ite. Maybe I’m really just a hipster in an Ann Taylor suit, and I’m better suited for Brooklyn.
(Yeah, I don’t think so, either.)
New York can keep Central Park. I’ll stick with the Mall and the Public Gardens for now.