Living in a city like New York means you learn to put blinders on to the unpleasant and annoying sights, smells, sounds, and strangers. It also means you can miss those beautiful moments that only have the opportunity to happen in a place like NYC.
Visiting a city like New York means you are just the opposite. You see everything (and of course you comment on it). Nothing gets past you. Maybe you don’t know exactly what you are seeing, smelling, sampling, or supporting, but you experience it all.
If you are like me and you live here, it means you are the person every friend and family members wants to see. No, they don’t particularly want to see you, they want to see the city (preferably with a room and a guide they don’t have to pay an arm and a leg for) so you are their ticket in. This can go two ways, 1. they have a plan and just crash with you, maybe have dinner, but otherwise they are out and about on their own OR 2. they need you to take them everywhere, navigate the subway, explain every thing you see, and be sure they eat and get home at night.
It can always be a little overwhelming having visitors, especially those who need all your time and attention. But it can also be a chance to show down and actually see the city you have decided to call home. Maybe the building you pass over and over again on your commute is actually a beautiful historical piece of architectural work, but you never noticed cause there is always a homeless man there and you never wanted to seem too interested.
Having a visitor in town gives you the perfect excuse to turn into a tourist for the day and see your home free of blinders and tinted ideas. This is that once a year time you allow yourself to actually set foot in times square or stand in a cue for something. You may eat out a little more or splurge on those nicer seats for a show (I think this may be my favorite part of having guests).
I’m not saying it’s not exhausting or expensive, but playing host can open you up to a lot of fun and adventure that’s right in your backyard… if you are able to look up and see it!
When you are a tourist for a day in your home city, what is something you enjoy experiencing?
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