Jason Proch came to America from the UK just over 6 years ago and I met him at a business conference here in New York. Over the following years we began a business together and Jason eventually relocated to NYC around 4 years ago. It has been hilarious and interesting to watch him integrate to life here in the Big Apple and I was talking to him just recently about the things that frustrate him most about living here. I thought I would share what he told me in the hope that it may help any other Brits who are coming over here to live.
New York City may have all of the food in the world and you may be able to get your hands on just about any beverage that you can think of but the lack of a good cup of tea here is worrying. These days everyone is into their hipster teas with wild flavors like rhubarb or echinacea, whereas all I want is a nice hearty mug of black tea, with a splash of milk and a dash of sugar, it isn’t too much to ask for.
There are two sides to look at here when it comes to politeness the first side is that people in the main are not polite here, they don’t have time for it, they will be direct and slightly brash and that will be it. That is all well and good but the other problem is that if you decide to be polite and showcase your full arsenal of manners, this city will swallow you whole. If you let an elderly lady take a taxi ahead of you she’ll likely flip you the bird, if you hold a door open for someone they’ll probably tip you and pass you their bags and you allow people to get ahead of you on the subway then you’ll be waiting all day. In order to survive in this city you have to ditch the manners, sharpen your elbows and get tough.
Despite the fact that the snow arrives every year here in New York, the locals and the services here act as though they have never seen snow before and everything grinds to a halt .back in the UK it would take the entire Alps mountain range to come crashing down on us before we succumbed to the snow but here it only needs a couple of centimeters and panic ensures.
A final frustration of mine is probably more down to the fact that I am now living in a city rather than in the countryside but the noise here is absolutely relentless. From dawn until dusk there are cars honking, trains chugging, people shouting and music blasting and it can be hard to get any peace. Even in Central Park there are people with speakers listening to music and silence is very much at a premium here.