Sunday, August 29, 2010

Gotham as Ghost Town

The second half of August is when a lot of things slow down in New York. Working in the financial district, the city can seem like a ghost town this time of year. Absent is the usually high-octane bustle and constant presence of crowds that characterizes daily life in the city for most of the year.

One friend remarked that Labor Day weekend is the best weekend to enjoy New York. Everything is still open but lots of people are out of town, so everything is less crowded and therefore more enjoyable.

I thought I was going to get out of the city more often this summer. Getting out of New York is very necessary to preserve your sanity, especially during the summer. I managed to get out of town a few times this summer, but not as often as I would have liked.

New York City is one of the worst places for it to be hot. The concrete and asphalt absorb and reflect the heat. Tall buildings trap car exhaust and other pollution, and there are millions of other people around contributing to the stifling misery.

And sadly, New York is in the midst of another heat wave. I don’t know what measure meteorologists use to declare a heat wave, but for me it’s two consecutive days where the temperature reaches or exceeds 86°F. The hot weather is not my friend.

If you enjoy sweat pouring down every part of your body while you share a concrete oven with 8 million of your closest friends, then New York City in the summer is for you.

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