Plugs - Firstly, it is a pain to try and find all the right adaptors for our laptops etc. Apple do make it easier because the cables all have changeable ends, but in true Apple style it costs an arm and a leg to get the new cables. Sorry, Apple, but we need our arms and legs for other things. Secondly, the wall sockets here look like little shocked characters all over the apartment, and it’s as though they’re mirroring my feelings about how shockingly awful they are… on most devices there is NO EARTH PRONG! On the ones that do have them, the socket is upside down, meaning as the plug invariably falls out over time, it reveals a load of live metal. Buuuut they do look fun. Meet Fred, Petunia, George and Rodrigo who hang out in our wall.
Guns - Now obviously people aren’t just swinging them around all over the place but I know they’re out there... This oddity (read: terrifying fact) was highlighted to me as we were setting up our U.S. bank account when I noticed a police man (sorry, cop), standing behind us in line. I saw his gun and instantly felt woozy. Even though his job is all about protection I suddenly had visions of him whipping off his mask revealing himself to be a green villain with 12 arms from a marvel film (I know that that isn’t actually a film, but you know what I mean), pointing his gun at me and yelling "GET DOWN ON THE FLOOR. DO NOT LOOK AT ME, I SAID DO NOT LOOK AT ME." A bit intense, sure, and Ted pointed out that the cop's presence probably made getting held up in a bank robbery a tad less likely.
Tipping - It’s not that I don’t approve of tipping - I’m fine with tipping, it is just that it’s not always obvious who you tip and how much of your life's savings you should tip… I don’t want to be the ignorant Brit that tips appallingly or the one that's naive and can be walked all over. Luckily, we’re getting to the point where we know enough true New Yorkers to give us some tips (not the monetary kind) about these complicated customs.
Apartment hunting - I will write (a lot) more on this topic in the future but for now let's think on this: in New York, to be considered for your apartment, your annual income needs to be 40 to 50 times your monthly rent. There are, just about, ways around this rule, BUT it means paying both our arms and both of our legs! See Apple, I told you we needed all of our limbs to pay for other things.
There's no doubt that it's a learning curve when you're a newbie in NYC, but it's learning that I'm willing to do, because after all it's New York (cue lights, camera, action... music meistro...'start spreading the news').