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New York through the eyes of a Russian-speaking immigrant: ten very strange things in the city


Vita Popova

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Locals often do not pay attention to some features of the city in which they live. Whereas tourists immediately notice everything unusual. A Russian-speaking guide from New York has a list of such differences. The information was published on the website

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“We are not talking about sights, but more about everyday things. I decided to make a small list of oddities and peculiarities, so that when you get to New York, you would not be confused by certain nuances of local life, ”the author explained.

We offer a list of what may surprise you in New York.

  1. The absence of the 13th floor

Do not be surprised if, upon entering an elevator in one of the buildings in New York, you do not find there a button with the number 13. “Enter the elevator and see: immediately followed by button 12 is 14, but there is simply no button 13. Unlucky number. Although there is no official floor, everyone understands that, whatever one may say, the one at number 14 is still 13th. Therefore, the cheapest apartments for rent and purchase are located on this unfortunate floor, ”the author said.

There is no 13th Avenue in Manhattan either, but there is 13th Street.

But the so-called number of the devil (666) is in use here and is popular. “For example, ZARA proudly writes the address of its flagship store in New York, 666 Fifth Avenu in advertisements and on all packages. Everyone has their own quirks, "- said the blogger.

It is noteworthy that not only New Yorkers are superstitious. The Japanese, for example, avoid the number 4, which in Japanese sounds the same as "death," and the character is one.

  1. Pharmacies resembling a supermarket

“In New York, no one is surprised by the phrase“ I'll go to the pharmacy for a beer and grab cigarettes ”. What is here called a pharmacy or “farmesi” (English Pharmacy) actually looks more like a supermarket or a supermarket, ”read the article.

In the pharmacy, New Yorkers can buy not only medicines, but also cosmetics, household chemicals, as well as sweets, light alcohol and (believe it!) Electronics. “In Manhattan, the most popular pharmacy chain is Duane Reade, CVS and Rite Aid. In any of them you will find everything you need from vitamins, medicines and toothpaste to a food processor and a TV, the author writes. “If you don’t know where to buy an adapter or a fresh press, then you should come here too!”

In addition, some pharmacies have beauty studios attached to cosmetics departments where you can get a manicure or get a consultation from a beautician.

  1. Lack of washing machines in apartments

The laundry facilities that we see so often in films about New York are very popular among the population. “In films, there are often scenes when the hero drags a bag of dirty clothes through half the city, and then sits in the Laundromat (in Russian,“ washing ”, not dry cleaning) and dangles his legs in anticipation of clean clothes, making sure that no one steals his goods. Alas, this is not a fiction of filmmakers - this is the harsh truth of New York life, ”the guide notes.

In some areas, for example, in West Village, China Town, East Village, you can find such washing machines. “They are called laundromats here, where washing machines stand in a slender row against one wall and tumble dryers on the other. You need to insert either a coin or a card into the machine (depending on the advancement of the laundromat). One download costs from $ 2, ”the author writes. But while the clothes are being washed, it will take about 40 minutes, after which it will be the same until they dry.

Newer houses have their own laundromats, so people don't have to walk around with dirty things down the street.

Even in elite houses, it is forbidden to install washing machines inside the apartment. "Why? Good question. Someone decided that this way they save electricity and water. They say, if you allow to put machines in the apartments, everyone will start washing like crazy, and they will think twice whether or not to run every day on the floor (and even worse - in the city) with laundry, ”we read in the article. Apparently, the author believes, this business brings benefits to someone.

  1. Unusual restrooms

Tourists visiting the toilets in New York can be very surprised. The fact is that the amount of water in the toilet bowls is very different from the usual for Europeans. “How many times have I had to reassure my panicky clients that their toilet was okay! And you don't need to call a plumber, ”the guide said.

This was done for sanitary purposes, because brushes are not in use here. “For some reason, even the most progressive hotels do not supply restrooms. Therefore, do not be alarmed: in your room, everything is the same as in the whole city - unusual, but normal, "the author explained.

  1. Yellow taxi does not come on call

Tourists in New York often do not know how to call a yellow taxi. There are special applications for the IPhone, but not all taxi drivers have an IPhone. “Taxi drivers in New York are a separate caste. Many of them do not always speak and understand English, and I am silent about the IPhone and the general knowledge of modern technologies. To see the challenge, you need to at least have an IPhone with this application and, of course, know that such an application exists. There are no dispatchers in the yellow taxi, so we can only rely on the driver's “advanced”, - explained the guide.

The safest way is to catch a taxi on the street. This shouldn't be difficult, unless you try to do it during rush hour.

On the subject: Tourists and Locals Note: 10 Ways to Save Money in New York

“If you suddenly find yourself in an area where taxis do not go, or it is fundamentally important for you to order a car for a certain time, then you can contact Car Service (ordering a taxi, not yellow, but black and more expensive). The phone number of the taxi service nearest to you will be happy to tell you Google or the concierge at your hotel, ”the author advises. But be prepared to pay double or even triple the price. “In the most extreme case, this is a way out. Nerves and time are more expensive, especially when you have to go to the airport, ”she added.

  1. Alcohol is sold only in specialized stores

If you want to buy wine and spirits, then in New York this can only be done in specialty stores. “In this case, the pharmacy will not help us out. Just as a grocery store and small "delhi" will not help out. Only specialized stores have the right to sell strong degrees, ”the author explained.

It is easy to calculate them - according to the luminous words of the Liquor Store. “You will be pleasantly surprised by the assortment, because alcohol is brought from all over the world. Even in the smallest shop by the standards of Manhattan, you can get lost in the wine section alone. The price will be a nice bonus. A bottle of excellent Californian wine can be bought for $ 10, bourbon from $ 20. Walk your soul! With such prices and assortment, it is worth thinking once again, who is the more drinking country - Russia or is it America? " - the guide asks.

  1. Cigarettes: differences, cost and other oddities

A real quest awaits smokers in New York: first, to find a place to buy cigarettes, and then - to find a place to smoke them. The fact is that it is forbidden to smoke indoors in any restaurant, bar or club.

In addition, cigarettes in New York differ in size: there are short (standard) ones, there are 100mm and there are 120mm ones. This does not affect the price.

By the way, the cost of cigarettes may surprise you. “If the prices are pleasing with alcohol, then the situation with cigarettes is exactly the opposite. A fight has been declared against smoking in New York, because the price for a pack can reach $ 15, and for cigarettes of not the best quality. You already know where to look for them - in the pharmacy ... But you can smoke only on the street, ”the author noted.

Most hotels are also non-smoking. Only a few hotels have smoking rooms. “The way out for those who are“ for comfortable smoking with a cup of coffee ”can be a cigar club. But, as you know, they will look at you strangely there. Still, a cigarette and a cigar are not at all the same, ”the author explained.

  1. People with many dogs - who are they?

In New York, you can often find a person with a large number of dogs. These are the so-called walkers. “Great job for students and people who are still undecided in life. Quite a profitable business. For walking the pet, the owner must pay from $ 30 to $ 50 per hour of walking. The walker collects a maximum of pets from one house, walks with them for an hour and returns to the owner. Then he goes to the next house and does the same, ”we read in the article.

This way you can make good money. The only disadvantage of this work is that the dogs must be cleaned. This is strict in New York. The fine for ignoring this rule reaches $ 1000 in some areas of the city.

On the subject: Hiking the Hudson River: An Idea for a Safe Travel in New York

So the next time you meet a man with ten dogs, you shouldn't think that he is crazy.

  1. Coffee on the go

In New York, it is customary to take coffee with you and drink it in liter glasses. “In Russia, this tradition has just begun to develop, but in America it is customary to drink liters of coffee on the go, carrying it in a giant glass, or even better in a thermos,” the author writes. - Every morning, long lines line up for a mega dose of caffeine. In rare establishments, you can see cups and saucers or at least a mug - common and so familiar to Russia and Europe dishes. In New York, everyone is in a hurry, there is no time to sit, so the best friend of coffee lovers is a disposable glass. "

But even if you want to enjoy a leisurely breakfast inside the establishment, you will not be provided with glassware.

Although this invigorating drink is so popular in New York, its quality is poor. “About the fact that the drink in these glasses with the logo of Starbucks and other famous coffee houses can hardly be called coffee, I promise to tell you separately. Alas, New York is not famous for its (real, strong and tasty) coffee, ”the author says.

  1. Tipping is the norm

In New York, this unspoken rule applies everywhere. “It is customary to leave tips in taxis, restaurants, beauty salons, hotel concierges and other service personnel. Even if you are not happy with your lunch or a trip in a yellow taxi, you will have to leave for tea. This is the norm. And you can't get away from this, ”the author states.

But the size of the tip is determined by the client. “If you are not satisfied with the service provided to you, leave less than 10% of the total bill. If the service was average, then the amount of 10-15% is quite acceptable. Well, if you liked everything and you plan to return to this restaurant, then you should leave 20-25%. Sometimes, when the service is absolutely disgusting, you can throw in $ 5 or $ 1 and leave, but then it is better not to return to this place, "the author recommends.

Of course, this is not the whole list of features of New York. However, knowing about them, you will be better prepared for a trip to the city, which makes all these "oddities" unique.

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