Those Fifteen seconds!

2013-09-24 09.15.11Street crossing in New York City is indeed a skill. First of all you need to mindful of the stream of people coming against you. You lose your focus for a moment and you could be left on the middle of the cross walk with everyone confused! What the heck are you doing? Then there are those yellow cabs and those bad-ass SUVs with all polished wheels and privacy glasses wanting for you to get out of the way – you can see they inch into the cross walk to claim their space and time! While crossing the street can take 15 seconds, it does feel like a long time. In that time you notice a lot of things. People young and old, the dress savvy work woman, the upcoming young man with his blazers and tie on a hot sunny day, the just arrived immigrant family that is struggling to figure out where to go trying to herd together their little ones, the established Caribbean on his cell phone checking on his fellow crew – oh! And the East European smoking away his cigarette unmindful of the wisps of smoke drifting to all those behind. And the one from who-knows-where pushing his high load of boxes on his pushcart navigating deftly through – he is smart to take the extreme edge of the cross walk while occasionally shouting obscenities at the cab driver who has butted in way too much. Amongst all these, there are those cars that are stuck on the cross walk that we have to pay attention to. These didn’t make it all the way through the last light. Having been in the car, on the cross walk myself a few times, I have learnt New Yorkers don’t mutter against these but navigate around them. The policewoman – additional help in managing the crowd and traffic – also turns a blind eye to these stuck on their way! If it were a city like Philadelphia, you can be sure that he will get some cold stares if not a four-letter word muttered. Once you’re cross the street, it is another thing to navigate the sidewalks altogether 🙂

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