New York: The Concrete Jungle - This American Girl

The Concrete Jungle

New York City


With sand in my hair

and mud between my toes


This American Girl


I bid farewell to the tropics

and trekked to the paved pathways


New York City


of my favorite city



New York City


I entered the tangled maze


New York City


stopping to smell the roses


Grand Central Station


quickly remembering


New York Shake Shack


why this city


New York City


has always had my heart.


Upper East Side


Because in New York




a buzzing energy circulates


Soho New York


infecting you with passion


New York City


with confidence


New York City


with courage


Afro Bats


reminding you that you are alive.


Central Park New York


Parks sit like oases


Central Park New York


in an asphalt desert


Central Park New York


bringing the masses to nature


Central Park New York


and a local watering hole.


Soho Manhattan


Restaurants cover corners


The Smith New York


the next always cooler than the last


New York City




New York Cupcakes


and sweets


Soho New York


are everywhere


Soho New York


we are powerless to resist.


Upper East Side


Wandering the streets


Central Park


like a world traveler spanning the globe


New York City


you can find every culture


Soho Shopping New York


hear every language


Midtown New York


without even leaving home.


Soho Shopping New York


Fashion is fierce


Central Park Performers


the expression may be weird


Union square new york


but you can be anyone


Union square new york


without being feared.


New York City


In New York among traffic


New York City


among garbage and even crime


New York City


there is beauty all around you


New York City


if you only stop for a while.


New York City


And in New York


New York City


the buildings and bridges


New York City


that sit higher


New York City skyline


than your eyes can even span


New York City


don’t make you feel small.


New York City Park


They show you how big you can be


New York City Afrobats


when you let yourself fly.



My Favorite Things in New York, New York


With the endless restaurants, museums, events, and shops in New York, this list is hardly exhaustive. But when I am in New York, these are that things always bring me bliss.


Brunch at Noho Star

Hands down my favorite brunch spot in all of New York. I have been coming here since I was a kid and it never disappoints. The salad with goat cheese and avocado, bruleed oatmeal, and the burger with shoestring fries are among my favorites.


Nutella ice cream from Ronnybrook Farms in the Chelsea market

The best ice cream I have ever tasted in my entire life.


A perfect bagel and cream cheese

You can get this anywhere. It’s New York people.


Vanilla macaroon from Laduree 

These treats really do live up to the hype. Savor one slowly letting the delicate meringue crumble between your teeth before sinking into the creamy center. Vanilla is my favorite. Why mask perfection with any other flavor?


Shopping in SoHo

Ever since I first came to new york as a wide eyed ten year old, SoHo has been my favorite neighborhood in New York. I love the architecture, the small streets, the fashion, and the beautiful stores.


The Farmer’s Market in Union square

Raised in Seattle it just wouldn’t be Sunday without a trip to the farmer’s market. I love the selection at the one in Union Square which has beautiful flowers and micro greens in the summer. When I’m in the big city interacting with farmers from New Jersey or upstate helps me feel grounded.


A walk in Central Park

On a sunny day there is no better place to be in New York but Central Park. I love sitting around the ponds and people watching.


Exploring the Impressionists at the Metropolitan Museum

This might make me a square but for me no museum in New York holds a candle to the Met. The Whitney and the MoMA can be fun, but when I want to truly feel moved I head straight to the impressionists collections at the Metropolitan Museum. I spend the afternoon with Matisse, Picasso, and Van Gogh. They make the best company.


Shopping for dinner at Grand Central Market

New York is paradise for foodies like me and Grand Central Market has an amazing selection of seafood, produce, and spices.


Standing on the Brooklyn Bridge just before sunset

When the sun casts a warm glow over the city, photographers and models line the Brooklyn Bridge for photoshoots. The views are gorgeous and it’s inspiring to watch.


Seeing an off broadway show

I’ve seen some pretty amazing theater in New York over the years, from Les Miserables to The Lion King to Mary Louise Parker in Proof, but its the off broadway productions that usually leave the biggest impact on me. My first trip to New York I saw the De La Guarda dance troupe from Argentina perform one of the most bizarre and entertaining shows of my life and last fall I enjoyed the confusion and exercise running up and down stairs in the highly interactive production of Sleep No More.


Hanging with the cool kids in Alphabet City after dark

Over the years on my visits to New York I’ve smoked hookah in Moroccan bars when I was underage, sang karaoke in holes in the wall in Midtown, had bottle service in clubs in Chelsea, and danced at the top of hotel bars in swimming pools. My favorite way to enjoy New York is still sitting over a fancy cocktail with friends. The Lower East Side has some of the coolest spots to enjoy a cocktail. My favorites are The Experimental Cocktail Club and Please Don’t Tell.


Relaxing at Home

Sipping pink cocktails on the sofa, eating steamed shrimp with my fingers, and having slumber parties with my Aunt Janet who has always made New York feel like home.


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  1. Camille I loved this <3
    It's funny how vastly different this place is from Costa Rica – yet I can feel immediately at home in both places. and Alphabet City! that's where I live! — sounds like you had a great time. Hope you've been well

    • This American Girl Says: September 12, 2013 at 12:04 pm

      Hi Phyllis, thanks for your comment! Next time I’m over there I will let you know. If you ever go into Please Don’t Tell let Jeff the bartender know I say hi, we go waaaaaay back :)

  2. Yay, a New York City post! This resonated SO much with me. I’m from FL and moved to NYC four years ago and never looked back. This city has my heart and your photos & descriptions made me fall a deeper in love with this amazing city.

    And ah, yes the perfect bagel. My favorite is Ess-a-Bagel. If you’re ever in NYC, I’ll eat a bagel with you! I’m a huge fan of your blog :).

  3. Took my first trip to NYC in March this year. We took our 15 year old daughter and we LOVED every moment. We were fortunate to have a friend living on the upper west (I think) that showed us around some. Love reading your posts :-)

    • This American Girl Says: September 16, 2013 at 11:37 pm

      Thanks Janet! So glad you enjoyed yourself. I’m sure your daughter will hold that trip as a lifelong memory :) I’ll never forget my first time in New York.

  4. I live in Boston and love taking the bus to New York for day trips or one night stays. I’ve always stayed around the Times Square area or near the iconic attractions. This past weekend, I decided to change things up a bit and get lost in Greenwich Village and people watch at the various parks. It was amazing. New York is a place of characters! I ABSOLUTELY love this blog post and to me it feels like a poem or an ode to the city! I look forward to following and being inspired by your blog!

    • This American Girl Says: October 18, 2013 at 8:54 am

      Thank you Cristina you are so kind :) New York is the best place to wander, get lost, and see who and what you find. It’s my favorite thing to do there!

  5. I grew up roughly 90 minutes from New York in Burlington County, New Jersey but I haven’t spent as time in New York as I should. That said, I usually have fun in New York. My favourite thing to do in the city is grab a pizza.

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