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22 December 2007

Fairy Tale of NYC

The latest installment (oh noes! B is worried that C will tell N about their thing! D and Little J, meanwhile, certainly aren't having a merry little Christmas when mom moves out; OMG! Oh noes!) of my latest guilty pleasure, AKA Gossip Girl, has left me craving NYC even more than usual. 'Twas the Christmas episode and there were plenty of NYC-at-Christmastime scenes, including skating on the Wollman rink in Central Park.

I guess, to me, New York is Christmas or, at least, it has all of the elements for the perfect Christmas and having spent four out of the past ten Christmases there, I feel I am in a good position to judge. Here are a few of my favourite things about New York in December

1. Skating in Central Park. One of my favourite things to do in the whole world - the rink is decent-sized, the hot choc is superb, the choons are awesome but, most of all, the views of the skyscrapers lit up by night are outstanding.

2. Last minute shopping made easy given that there are so many great shops, and Kate's Paperie provides beautiful cards, wrapping paper and accessories to make even the cheapest present look classy and expensive.

3. The weather. It's only snowed on two of the occasions I've been in NYC for Christmas: one time was pretty intense (about a foot) although being New Yorkers, they just got on with cleaning the streets and getting back to normal.

4. The inevitable Boxing Day walk can be done on Brooklyn Bridge to maximise the spectacular urban scenery; it certainly beats walking along the Cam to Fen Ditton, anyway.

5. Jack's coffee house feels even cosier and more inviting than usual when the weather outside is frightfully cold.

6. Apart from Christmas Day, the shops are open long, long hours and have great sales (I usually hate The Sales; they tend to be over-populated and full of crap I wouldn't want to buy).

7. The Festive Spirit. Americans are so much better at holidays than we Brits are and everyone is just brimming with seasonal excitement, along with that New Yorker - can't stop, must get on - attitude.

Incidentally, when I was scouring the lyrics of the song that gave its title to this post, I came across a list of songs about NYC. Given how hard it was for me to make my selections for a California-themed playlist, I can see that creating one for NYC songs could take some time to pick my favourites (Interpol, for example, are a favourite band of mine but their song NYC isn't their best IMO).

Ah, New York, I miss you. Luckily, though, my dad is already dropping hints about the next family trip there, which should be in about March or April; I can probably wait until then, I suppose. I'm still jealous of my housemate who is there right now.

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