Tuesday, February 10, 2009

I Love Being a New Yorker

As much as you hear me complaining about this city being overcrowded, somewhat rude and a bit too loud in some places, I really love being from here. To me, NY is just the center of the world. Here, you will find any and every kind of food, person, culture, custom, manner of dress, style, attitude; EVERYTHING that exists on the planet can be found here. I love having grown up in a place that exposed me to so many different peoples, languages and cultures from such an early age. In some states, they still only have 'black, white and mexican, or 'black, white and Native Am'. My brother used to truck all over the country and told me of how lacking in diversity some places in this country still are.

For the longest time, my cousins from North Carolina called all Asian people "Chinese". They just didn't know any better.... there have only begun to be a diversity of Asian people in the part where they live. They had no clue what Arabs were unless they saw them on TV. Hell, I get to live, work and interact with ALL peoples on a daily basis. I feel so blessed! I knew from kindergarten that there were Filipinos, Chinese, Japanese, etc, because my classroom had a rainbow of different races. That's why I'm most comfortable and happy living in a totally diverse neighborhood like I do now...it's what I've known from the very beginning.

I can speak 4 languages now, and I think that being a New Yorker has helped to fuel my desire to learn how to speak some of the tongues I hear on a daily basis.
I first learned Spanish in grade school, but took lessons later in life to really learn it. I speak pretty good Italian after studying it for a good 3 years, and now am working on my Mandarin Chinese. I LOVE Chinese! It's so hard and challenging, and I love the fact that I can both read, write and understand many Chinese characters. In my opinion, that is one of the fiercest things about me right now!

My next language (once I really get the Chinese down) will be Arabic. I want to know all the major ones, although I plan to skip French. Just not into it! ;)

On a daily basis I might hear 20+ different languages being spoken here as I go about my life. That's just the way it is in New York. I always get excited and happy when I can understand what someone is saying in a language other than English, which does happen more frequently now that I've put so much time and effort into studying languages.

Anyway, I enjoy being a hard nose, street smart, somewhat cocky, savvy, multi talented, bad ass, multi lingual, New York City woman! I wouldn't have it any other way! :D


Urban Thought Thursday, February 12, 2009  

Being all those things is often the only way to survive in this city.

I'm glad you've educated yourself and can appreciate the diversity. Many out there, right here in NYC, don't venture out of their comfortable pocket of a neighborhood. I tell people to live a little and venture out--walk across the street why don't you.

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