5:43 pm, Friday August 22nd, anywhere and everywhere between the block of 6th and 7th on the cross with 34th St., NYC
Just a few hours previous as I sat on the steps across from Penn Station (waiting for Cynthia and Sydneeeey) I drew the conclusion that either no one in New York works, or that every single citizen of NYC is always working, and they’ve all managed to land jobs that do require them to wander the streets and don’t require business casual work wear.
At 5:43 (actually at 5, when the 43 minutes began that it took to drive one city block) this theory was quickly proven wrong as the streets became triply full, with beyond shoulder to shoulder, foot to heel traffic on the sidewalks. I had gotten out of the car Cynthia was driving to make a sprint for my bus to DC. I did not successfully sprint as there were too many people boxing me out and walking slow…so instead I successfully took a lot of people out, I stopped only for babies. Toddlers=fair game.
You could pick out the true New Yorkers, as they were walking in the actual road upstream, choosing to navigate crazy “I wouldn’t try that in my car” taxi drivers, instead of the herds of people on the sidewalks.
Unfortunately our directions to the stop were wrong, and as I ran madly back and forth between 6th and 7th street growing increasingly frustrated I wondered if my inner compass had failed me again (it’s been out of working order for a while now/since I was born) 6:00 rolled around, and then past me. When Cynthia could finally park she figured out the stop was actually between 7th and 8th street. I called and they said I could get on the 8:00 bus…which due to traffic didn’t actually show up until 9:25, but still, a success.
The most giant man I have ever seen ride a bus before and that I had been waiting next to in line climbed onto the bus first, looked at me (I think anticipating a full bus) and said: “So where do you want to sit? I don’t want to sit next to no big dudes.”
I said: “Ummmm, did you check out my 5’10” frame and child bearing hips? Because I spotted at least 7 full grown men in line for this bus who are smaller then me, why don’t you hit them up?”
Just kidding, I only thought that. What I actually did was mumble something, glance side to side and then sit in the seat behind him. I was happy with my decision as I looked through the seat crack to see him taking up 1.75 of the 2 seats in front of me.
I finally made it to DC, the last stop of my 2 week tour of the east coast where I got to catch up with many friends and family.
It’s times like 5:43 pm that make me think I wouldn’t ever want to live in NYC…but it’s times like just the day before when Cynthia, Arthur, and I walked through Little Colombia in Queens reminiscing (while Sydney simultaneously got pumped up) and drinking postobon manzana, that make me think I do.