July 14, 2024


El Chicano, Colton Courier, Rialto Record

Manny pictured at the Empire State Building Observatory, which is 1,250 feet above the ground.

Two weeks ago I traveled to New York City with my family for my 28th birthday. The moment I landed in Newark, New Jersey I immediately felt the difference between the west and east coast.

The Flat Iron Building, pictured behind subjects, was built in 1902. 

During much of my educational studies at California State University, San Bernardino I learned about communication between various cultures and differences in communication styles.

Now, back to the story…I was finally out of the airport in New Jersey, en route by car to our hotel in Times Square.

We get to the hotel and I realize that we were not greeted. This also happened at many restaurants we dined in. I’m so used to walking into a restaurant and having an employee say, “Hi, how can I help you?” But no, this rarely happened to us in New York. I found myself walking up to a customer service counter only to be looked at by an employee, waiting for me to say what I want.

Customer service does not seem to be regulated to as high of a standard as it is over here, maybe it’s due to the fact that it’s such a monumental city, that people will continue to visit, regardless.

The first day of our five-day stay was much of a culture shock. At the end of the first day I realized that these people were likely not intending to be rude…their communication style was simply part of their culture; it’s not wrong, it’s just different.

Once I looked past the cultural differences, I allowed myself to truly enjoy the trip. I initially had a difficult time adjusting to the fast paced New York City lifestyle because it was something I hadn’t experienced before.

Long story short…visiting New York City was an experience. It was an experience I was happy to be able to treat my Mom to and have my cousin Ashley, my Godparents, and aunt and uncle from Ventura come along as well.

I had the opportunity to visit the Empire State Building Observatory Deck (which is over 80 stories high), the 9/11 Memorial Museum, the Statue of Liberty, Central Park, the U.S. Natural History Museum and the Rockefeller Center Observatory; oh, and I ate an amazing pastrami sandwich that made my face puffy immediately after stuffing it down my face.

All in all…NYC was an amazing time and an experience I will always cherish.

My biggest take away from it though, is how different the people in NYC are from here in the Inland Empire and Southern California. I know we come across difficult people here in the IE every now and then, but I am so grateful to be surrounded by people who are mostly caring and kind.

…..regardless, I can’t wait to go back to NYC.


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