Not long ago I found myself muddling through crowds, standing astounded on Main Street, and taking short cuts to avoid human traffic jams. But instead of the setting of Universal Studios Orlando, my adventure took place in New York City.
Everyone had told me that New York was this and that – a sewer trap ridden with rats and rude, accented remarks. I had to walk fast or be trampled. Pick pockets are everywhere. New York was absolutely nothing like this; in fact, navigating the big apple was as easy as snaking through any of Orlando’s theme parks.
Here’s how New York and a theme park are similar:
- You need to walk fast, but people won’t hurt you if you don’t.
- There are (surprisingly short) lines that are avoidable if you look for the short cuts.
- The tourist areas are sketchy, but you can find a tranquil haven on a bench in some green space.
- No one knows where anything is.
- People will randomly stop in front of you to take a photo of something mundane.
- There are people in costumes in Times Square, but they will ask you for a tip unlike the character performers at Disney.
- Food is everywhere, albeit expensive.
- Instead of Mickey Mouse ears, everyone is wearing NYPD and New York Yankee shirts. EVERYONE.
Oddly enough, I found New York City and Orlando to be close cousins, if not twins. The two towns are similar, and if you can navigate Disney safely and with alacrity, New York City will be just like another theme park.