Alright, as I was sitting under a shady tree in the park this past weekend, it occurred to me that we were going to be in for another hot and humid NYC summer. We moved here almost a year ago right in the middle of a smokin’ hot, pavement burning, unrelenting heat wave. I was a newbie to the city then and struggled daily to keep my cool. Here is what I have learned about survival in New York City in the summer. My top ten list:
1. Escape– If you do not have an endless travel budget like myself, then find yourself some friends who have weekend retreats (preferably near the water) outside of Manhattan. Be extra nice to these friends and hopefully you will get yourself an invite. When you do get invited make sure you keep getting invited back by supplying your host with lots of wine/champagne upon your arrival. Worry not, if you do not have any friends with weekend retreats there are a ton of beautiful beaches that are only a train/bus ride away. Plan little day trips that will allow a bit of a reprieve from the never ending over-heated sidewalks and attitudes.
2. Go Shopping– Once place you can be guaranteed to find wonderfully crisp and cold air conditioning are in many of the shops lining the streets. In my opinion, the higher end the store, the colder the air conditioning (and usually the salespeople ;)). So, leave your wallet at home, head to Fifth Avenue and browse in and out of the lovely refreshing stores. My suggestion is Tiffany’s- extremely sparkly, there are five floors and the restrooms are beautiful.
3. Hang out at parks with water– If you don’t have children this can be a bit challenging and down right weird but if you do have children, embrace the water! The kids will be entertained for hours and you can sit and read a book while occasionally dipping your toes in the sprinklers to cool down.
4. Go to the movies– Summer is the time for blockbusters. Grab an iced drink and head into the dark air conditioned bliss and let Hollywood take you away!
5. Stay hydrated- Always carry water with you, this way you will avoid having to shell out $1- $1.50 to the guy on the corner. Better yet, find a local pub with a shaded patio and grab a nice cold brewskie, eh!
6. Get to know your local ice cream/gelato spots– It is a great way to offer your kids a treat when you are secretly coveting a cone yourself. You will be in their good books and everyone gets to cool off. Best of all, it is guilt free because everyone knows that an ice-cream/gelato/popsicle is a MUST have survival food group during the summer months.
7. Walk on the shady side of the street– I believe that this is the one true way you can tell the difference between native New Yorkers and tourists in the summer. New Yorkers are all walking at a brisk pace on the shaded side of the street trying to avoid the sun by ducking under the biggest buildings possible while tourists are walking in the blazing sun,wiping brows and squinting at maps. Trust me, stick to the shady side.
8. Join a swanky gym and hang out– The pricier the gym the nicer the facilities. Join one that costs what people in other parts of the country pay for rent and then simply go and hang out. The A/C will be pumping, the shower is spotless and there is usually a juice bar. Walk around with a towel, pretend you are either coming or going, hang on a couch and watch the beautiful people 😉
9. Hide in your apartment and nap– When all else fails, grump and complain and then just simply collapse on your sofa in front of your window air conditioner and nap until night falls and the temperature cools just a few degrees. Remember everything is still open, this is the city that never sleeps!
10. Stop Complaining!!– Like I said in my previous post New Yorkers love to obsess and complain about the weather. I just want to remind you right now about the brutal winter and spring we just survived. So, put on your sunscreen, grab a hat, venture outside and suck it up Princess!