How to Walk New York Alone

First, forget that you’re a tourist. Leave the camera at home. Travel to the city and, on the ride, go people watching.

Find yourself in Union Square. It’s 46 degrees out but who cares? Watch the flocks of people coming together. Do something stupid. Laugh and move along.

Finish the numbered streets and walk to Soho. Walk by the shop front of a popular bakery that’s closed for the day. Don’t wish it were open – you’ll only get hungry.

Take the E-train to the theater district. Don’t obssess over being a few minutes too late to catch a show. Walk to Times Square. It’s your third time, but that’s a minor detail. The lights still overwhelm you.

Watch the tourists. Grab some coffee to warm you up. Grab an overpriced empanada. Grab a hotdog. Eat it on the street. Laugh and take it in.

Stop when a couple of girls ask for a selfie – take one even if you don’t know what “challenge” it’s for.

Explore the place some more. Don’t leave till it’s late. Check out the bar scene even if you aren’t going in. Check out the small shops even if you aren’t buying anything.

Walk in the rain. No umbrella, no hood… but don’t let it stop you.

Take a deep breath. Let the cold air fill you. Laugh. This is what it’s all about.

Go home.

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