Monday, May 23, 2005

I've been working on the railroad...

Although a ride on the subway is always interesting, at night it becomes a whole different experience. Now I'm not talking about the changes in service and trains that chose to run at night. This is more of an experience that I don't believe every subway rider sees.

It was about 12:30 at night and all I wanted was a train going uptown from Penn Station. This proves to be more difficult than imagined because of the men who were walking on the tracks. Clothed in their orange vests and hardhats.. the men assured me that a train would be along soon despite the fact that they were currently taking the tracks apart with jack hammers. I understand that they have to do track repairs at night when there are less trains but they were acting so calm about the whole process. One man was drinking his coffee on the platform and then one second later he was down on the tracks still sipping out of his styrofoam cup. He was standing with one foot on each side of the third rail!! This was a tad bit creepy for me and I was shocked that he just was hanging out there taking his time telling the other men what to do.

The other workers were taking apart the latches on tracks. One man was using a sledgehammer to bash the locks while a man behind him took a jackhammer and took out the bolts. This was almost an interesting process to watch but I began to get impatient and worried. What was going to happen when a train came? So I looked down into the tunnel and there was a person standing in there with a flashlight. There is a lot of trust between that one man the conductor and the workers. A couple minutes later I saw the glow of the train lights in the tunnel. They didn't look like they were slowing down. Suddenly they stopped. The men took the big tools away from the track and left all the small pieces. Then they stood in the middle of the two tracks on a beam and let the train pass through. They even waved to the conductor. I boarded the train and wondered about the strangeness of the subway at night.

Friday, May 13, 2005

Only in NY

So I hate those dogs... you know, the little ugly things that resemble extended rats. First of all, these are animals and not accessories and should not be "worn" to match an outfit. Paris Hilton and Britney Spears need to grow up and learn how to treat their pets as pets.

The most annoying thing is to be on the subway sitting next to a bag. A bag that yips. Inside one of these bags, which can cost more than my rent, is a little smelly dog. Let me inform you that I love dogs and that I even have one but I would not dress her up in an outfit and shove her in a bag to carry around with me.

So yesterday I saw a sight that can only be explained as insane... a women was pushing one of these dogs in a stroller!! Yep this little dog was strapped in like a baby and she was pushing it across the street. I dog was also wearing a rhinestone studded collar. I was speechless and then I saw that she had a dog carrying bag hanging off of the stroller. She was not only one of those offensive dog carrying people, but a dog pusher.

What can I say but only in NY (and prob LA). :)

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

a ticket for walking!?

As I got off the train today at my stop, I noticed that everyone was walking slower towards the exit. I felt like I was in rush hour traffic IN A CAR! When it was my turn to go up the stairs I realized why everyone had slowed down, there were two policemen standing there. Now I understand when people slow down cars to gape at an accident or stop speeding when they see a cop car, but slower walking?? Are they going to receive a ticket for walking to fast??
[Dream sequence]
Siren.. rahrahaharah

Police Officer(PO): Excuse me ma'am. Please step over to the right side of the platform and take out your ID.

Unspecting Walker (UW): "Crap". (Rummaging through her bag)

PO: Do you know why we made you stop here?

UW: I was walking over the speed limit?

PO: Yes, and you were also cutting people off unsafely. I would like to let you off easy but this rushing is not acceptable and unsafe.....

UW: I understand.

So I know this won't happen so why were people walking so slowly?? I guess the police were in the way. The topper was that as I walked by one of the police officers, he checked me out! He blatantly looked me up and down. We are a far cry from tickets for walking but come on, do your job and look for crime, not nice bodies!

Thursday, May 05, 2005

3 Apples = $3.00?!

So my first experience of grocery shopping in NYC has hit me over the head as to what I got myself into. I will not have any money left and wont even be able to afford Ramen!! (Gristede's Ramen is 25 cents! What happened to 10 cent ramen!! ) So I digress...

Gristede's is the closest supermarket to my new home. So I thought because I only needed a few choice items that I would venture into this labyrinth of a store. I was shocked at the layout of the aisles. Not only were they super skinny but the curves and twists made the place into a racetrack for my shopping cart. I had to cut super tight turns while maneuvering the cart as to not smack the eggs along the side of the metal grating.

This experience was somewhat alarming to a suburban girl! What shocked me the most were the prices. I mean I know that the food is coated in a nice layer of gold but come on! I paid 3 dollars for 3 apples. (yes I know now that I should get fruit and veggies at the stand on the corner).

I bought 10 items all of which were not extravagant and most which were white rose(generic) brand. My total was $25. At this rate, I will be spending as much on food as I do on rent.

I spoke to some of my learned neighbors and they informed me I went to the expensive mega store and that there are a few that are less money. I will have to go exploring the neighborhood and find a good store.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

I heart Ikea!

So I'm living in NYC now. This was my dream and now it's happening.

I really needed to get new furniture so before I moved I took a trip to Ikea. Now I had only heard about this place and never had seen it. I remember one day when I was little, a catalogue from Ikea came in the mail. I looked through it and saw that they had a children's play area with a ball pit!! This made me want to visit the store even though I had no idea what they sold. The thought of this giant (or so I thought) room filled with balls that I could play in while my parents shopped, really excited me. So fast forward to last week when I actually stepped foot into this place that I'm sure I had dreamed about.

I was shocked at the enormity of the "showroom". The furniture was amazingly cute and there was so much to choose from. The folks in Sweden got it right, cheap and adorable furniture! My head started to swivel as I looked around at the couches and desks and knicknacks. They had thought of everything. I was planning my dream house in my head when I was snapped back to reality. I had one 10 by 12 room to furnish. As a smart consumer, I had done my research online before actually heading to the store.

I found my furniture set and feel in love. The fake wood look was the winner and I went to go find the box to take it to the register when my eyebrows wrinkled up and I saw in front of me a little red tag that told me what bin and aisle to pick up my furniture. Little did I know how they were able to keep the prices crazy low. I went over to a handy Ikea employee and she helped me to find all the correct coding to use down in the warehouse. I was confused because I thought the showroom was the warehouse being that the ceilings were high.

I took my printed sheet with lots of numbers on it to the warehouse where as a spoiled girl, I thought someone would collect my boxes for me. Well, nope not the case. My dad and I took the flat cart and began filling it. The thing that Ikea decided was to put all the pieces in different boxes. So my bed, for example, was in 4 boxes! The weight of these boxes was backbreaking but Ikea was once again smart and somehow made everything flat. After we collected all the parts and checked out, (yay super cheap!) we had to puzzle piece fit the boxes into the car. In the pouring rain!

Putting the million pieces together is a whole other story. Just think of an instruction manual with pictures of the little Ikea man with a question mark over his head. 7 hours of hard labor! It was a long day with a dad and boyfriend who were not good with reading instructions. But now I have beautiful furniture!!
After all that I would still go back to Ikea to get more furniture. It's like having a baby (I wouldn't know but what from what I heard it hurts, a lot) and forgetting the pain and looking forward to a beautiful new room!