If you’ve ever spent an evening strolling through Greenwich Village, shared a slice of $1 pizza in SoHo, or sat next to the Hudson River you’ll know what I mean.
New York city is one just one of those places. There’s something in the water… maybe it’s Vodka, maybe i’ve just been blissfully tippled the every time i’ve been there. It sure feels like it.
Me and my best friend Jenn (check out her absolutely hilarious life blog) and our incredible Adopted Father (more on him to come), were having drinks at a little speakeasy in London and after 3 mojitos I piped up “we should just get away… just go away for a bit!” “where?” replied Adopted Father, I swear I didn’t even pause before “New York” popped out my mouth. Fast forward to 2 am, me and Jenn are bed laughing and joking and we hear “girls…. i’ve booked three tickets to New York…”. i can’t tell you what happened after that because I don’t remember, I think maybe I passed out or just screamed continuously for 10 minutes.
But I digress, I think the impossible-to-put-your-finger-on quality that this city has, comes from a magical triad of elements that slap you round the face and leave you shouting “Hey, Jaaaaaannny! Whut’s the deal?!”
Who came up with the ‘rule’ that American’s are assholes? Assholes that’s who. If you press your ear closer to the wall you’ll realise that they’re actually some of the coolest people you’ll ever meet. They just say what the fuck they think, that’s all. They start conversations, they yell about shit if they’re angry and they whistle tunes in the street when they’re happy. These are my kind of people. No saying sorry to lampposts, no “Oh. It’s… it’s okay” when you get given the wrong food. Good old fashioned folk who aren’t afraid of strangers and know what they want. Welcome to New York. You’re gonna love it.
Electric Lady studios, Studio 54, Broadway, 5th Avenue… I could go on but I won’t because i’ll start crying. This city is built on icons that changed the scope of America, on businesses that innovated everything from fashion to food. Manhattan is sliced up into big rich chunks of history- Five Families (The New York Mafia) made their name in Little Italy and the Rat Pack used to hang out in SoHo. The meat packing district- now a schmooze shopping area- used to be chock-a-blocked with bodies the mafia had disposed of… I mean, shit just happened here. Plus, Half the albums you’ve listened to and half the movies you’ve watched were dreamt up and created here, and that leads us to….
The American Dream
Walking through Manhattan, you feel like you’ve already been there, and you have. You’ve walked those streets in all the movies you’ve watched, songs you’ve heard, theatre performances you’ve enjoyed. The magic comes from that strange sensation of deja vu coupled with the realisation that it’s exactly how you imagined. Plus everything they do, they do it big. They do it like it’s a blockbuster movie set. Walk into a toy store and there’ll be 30 foot replica dragons made out of felt…. roaring at each other. If that’s not the American Dream then I don’t know what is.
Make sure you get yourself to:
The Dead Rabbit
Kooky TriBeCa drinks joint with more memorabilia and cocktails than you can shake a stick at.
Ellens Stardust Diner
Just off Broadway metal tank ‘diner where the singers dance on your tables as you eat.
Authentic american diner with a old fashioned trailer park interior and waitresses with thick New York accents who’ll serve you “cwaffeee” and 10 round of blueberry pancakes all day.