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First 10 days living in Manhattan, and I totally feel it is deferent compared to just visiting the city.  I felt I have experienced what people have lived here for half year, as a half-year long citizen - @fazworks took us to taste the deep inside of New York, the premier places in NYC on his list.  In addition, finding an apartment took such a long and painful process for us, it seemed like forever.

Weather

We just felt so lucky last week that New York this year is not so cold.  My boyfriend is worrying about the heavy coat that he just got has not chance to be worn.  Last weekend, the weather showed its real face to us, lowest 19 in the morning, strong wind like old society, and snow - I start to miss OC and LA.

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Living

On the second day of arrival, we were lucky enough to find a riverside place, which also is close to our friend.  The upper east side has unbeatable choices of restaurants, brunches, cafes and groceries.  The subway line 6 will take us to anywhere.  However, renting an apartment in Manhattan is such a painful thing.  We just came out of school, didn’t have income last year.  Although my boyfriend has a new job, it doesn’t count as a credit.  He needs to find maximum two guarantors whose incomes are more than 80 times of our rent, even though we have shown them our saving amount and are willing to pay several months up front.  The rent about one bedroom in the upper east side is about $2200, I don’t think even regular US citizen in our age can find guarantors, who are most likely their parents who are about retired. For me, a foreigner, it is impossible to get a rent here by this rule.  In addition, they need to send guarantee documents via Fedex to guarantors to sign and ask them to send Fedex back.  Going back and force, we finally got to sign the contract in a week.  Moreover, we used broker, we have to pay one month rent as his service fee, which is relatively cheaper than the second broker we saw the following day who charges us 15% of annual rent and asked us to pay $1000 cash for deposit.  Ridiculous! 

Now we are moving to the apartment, which is limited space and small closets.  Our friends recommend us that buy any furnitures which can store things that  we can go to container shop to hang on every doors to save the space, even don’t miss the wall and cupboard.   However, we also need to consider aesthetics, not too shabby.  My boyfriend and I are moving together, too many things already got thrown away, still we need to figure out the how to store our summer clothes and our dogs items.  Headache!

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Shopping

Anything you can think of can be found in this dynamic city.  We start to buy some home items for our apartment, but figure out there are too many choices, randomly find something else interesting disrupting us.  I realize that we are two picky people with different ideas, so that it took longer time to make decisions.   In addition, there always are too many people shopping, checking out, can’t help thinking of the same thing happened in my own home town -Shanghai.  I made the conclusion: I hate shopping.

Customer Service

Also the customer service is so bad. 

@BestBuy customer services doesn’t waste more words necessary to explain to customer that returning goods needs ID and throw the receipt to me and leave, the manager said it is customer’s responsibility to read the receipt and referred to Victoria Secret also does so. What a logic!  My ID picture in my phone doesn’t count, I have to go back again.  

I went to China Town for some shrimp dumpling and noodles, the seating arrangement was horrible in that restaurant.  There is no first come first get policy, and the Cantonese waitress told me to share a table with two other strangers, otherwise I have to keep on waiting.  Horrible!

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Eating

New York has the most delicious food in the States, which turns me to start to like NYC

I tried three random Chinese restaurants around our home, two (Lily’s noodle & Sushi bar and China Spice) of them are very authentic, which make me miss my hometown.  But I wonder why so many Chinese restaurants, which cook very well, always have sushi, a Japanese option? However China town is different-pure Chinese food - top level dimsum and Shanghai food in the States.   Never the less, I was confused when I should speak English or Chinese to communicate better there!!

I also tried Felice (Italian), Mercadito(Mexican), premium fried potato with 20 choices of sauce, Kobe Sushi (Japanese).  They all make me think New York people are so luck for the delicious food, on the other hand, dining out is about 30-50% more expensive than LA.  hmm, I decide to cook at home more and buy a cart to go to Chinatown to carry some cheap groceries back.

Run

Running is my life.  Upper east side has friendly neighbor that running in the evening is also very safe.  I see many runners running on the street.  My friends and my boyfriend have developed street running strategy that running through the walking lights, always keep on going, rather than go straight, we makes turn depending on the light, which makes few stops.  Our apartment is on the east end close to the river, also only 10 minutes running to the central park and metropolitan museum.  Our friends showed us several courses and said when we are familiar with the area,we can go anywhere in the park.  I never thought I can run the central park on daily bases, just like a dream to me.  I am really excited.  I think a lot of New Yorkers must have really healthy physical condition, (don’t mention psychological one), eating well, walking a lot among the blocks, and many runners and cycler. 

Fun

I love New York the craziness.  I saw pants-off metro ride.  I smelled people smoking pot on the street at east village.  I went to the Burp Castle, which is a quite bar that waitress will shush to customers to keep quiet. See the craziness of some beer drinkers at which is the oldest bar since world war and has tearing story about the wish bones and women fighting history to have the right to come to the brewery.


I have complicated feelings about this city, maybe it is the right answer - New York is complicated. I am hoping in the New Year, I can have steady income so that we can enjoy the good things more and win some respect from New York to make tough things go through easily.
Holly Sun
1/18/2012 01:47:58 pm

This blog is really well written. I'm imagining a tiny Shanghai gal running in the Central Park. Great to know you are happy there!

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1/18/2012 10:14:07 pm

Thanks a lot, getting there. Thanks for reading it, more interesting things continue...

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10/18/2013 06:15:53 pm

Thanks to your post, I found Weebly and made my own blog too, thanks.

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