When I first rolled into New York City on a Greyhound from the Martha's
Vineyard ferry terminal back in 1981, I never dreamed I would spend at least
the next 26 years of my life here. I was crashing on the floor of my former
college roommate's studio apartment in the far West Village and I hoped, as
I meandered about those maze-like streets, that downtown Manhattan would someday be my home. After protracted periods of life on the Upper East and West sides, I finally settled in Greenwich Village with my family of five. With an office in Soho, downtown is pretty much my full-time stomping ground.
Mornings are perfect at Balthazar in Soho, where the locals meet for blazing hot coffee, bread, and pastries baked at the Balthazar Bakery next door. Farther west on 12th Street, the new Cafe Cluny has a quiet neighborhood feel and plenty of free newspapers to peruse while ... [more]
Andy Arons, Gourmet Garage
You're driving in the city? Quelle dommage. To avoid skyrocketing blood pressure, come expecting that cars will cut you off, that double parked vehicles dot every street, that pedestrians will wander heedlessly into your path, and that cabbies will veer across four lanes in ten meters to pick up a fare. If you expect it, it will come as no surprise when it happens. Driving in New York is doable, and it is made easier by knowing a few simple guidelines. First: no right on red. Hear that, New Jersey? Second, find the streets with lights in synch. On the west side, for instance, that's Amsterdam going north, and Columbus going south. Third, remember the highways: if you have to go from uptown to downtown--or vice versa--make your way to the FDR (on the east side) or the West Side highway. Even with traffic, it's usually faster than in the heart of the city. Fourth, 1010 AM: remember the ...