Friday, August 20, 2010

Taking our lives for granted

I stop and think of my own life and take things for granted. I took the Sprite to the Central Park Zoo. It was just too hot to go to the Bronx Zoo. It was her first trip to the zoo and a lot of firsts.

I was unaware that the Tranquil Sea had never been to a zoo or an Italian Restaurant.
Perhaps as a native NYC type sometimes I take things for granted.

The Sprite was drawn to the fountains of Columbus Circle. She had never seem them before. I was to find out later she had never seen a horse up close either. I did make a small mistake and should have brought a camera, not for me but for the Sprite. She did enjoy feeding goats and lambs at the Childrens zoo. We did look for an antisemitic Duck at the Zoo and did not find one.

The Sprite enjoyed a good meal at the Italian restaurant. I was shocked that apparently the Tranquil Sea has never eaten in an Italian restaurant.

We think of our own lives as typical, but in fact they are not. I was reminded of that in California when I ordered in Chinatown with zero difficulty while my peers could not get served. My life may not be as typical and average as I had assumed. Maybe nobody's life is in actuality.


The_Editrix said...

"I was reminded of that in California when I ordered in Chinatown with zero difficulty while my peers could not get served."

Why not, Beak?

beakerkin said...

NYC residents have certain skills that come from our daily experiences.
Your average NYC resident with the rare exception of a person who has not ventured out of their ethnic enclave like Sunbeam and to a much lesser extent the Tranquil Sea have
experiences with all types of cultures.

In my case I have been going to Chinatown for decades before I visited LA. My peers let a person who spent three years studying in China try to speak. In NYC one is more apt to enounter Fouchow or Cantonese than the expected Mandarin.

Astute Old Chinatown hands who have been there many times just simply order by number. It is easier to look at the menu and say
24 than to bandy words with a waiter who speaks no English. I just gave the number ate my food while my coworkers assumed I spoke the local Chinese dialect. I showed them how I did it and everyone had a good laugh.

This may sound funny, but many skills that NYC residents take for granted were invaluable on the trip. Many of my coworkers had never driven in the snow or knew how to how to read a subway map.

There were quite a few people who spent days trying to guess where I was likely to eat. Korean Barbeque, Thai, Cuban, Italian, Moroccan are quite common in NYC.
I also spent enough time in less cosmopolitan places so that I adapted there seamlessly.

Such oddities as my quest to find 3X Body Wash, Deli Mustard and sample the local beverages were amusing.

The_Editrix said...

Thanks, Beak! I understand now. Fascinating stuff!