New York City: The Epicenter of the US Coronavirus Outbreak. Many residents, including myself, fled to their families in other parts of the country. The brave ones stayed and were locked inside their tiny apartments for months. I abandoned my city, but my city never abandoned me.
People all over the world have been announcing that New York City is dead. They say it has officially peaked and will never be the same. Sure, you can listen to Jerry Seinfeld, one of the most successful and wealthiest entertainers, insist that the city is going to survive or read the comments on Facebook from your great aunt proclaiming cities are never going to be same. No offense to Mr. Seinfeld or your great aunt, but their perspectives simply aren’t realistic.
I’m sure my judgement will be questioned considering I’ve only been in the city for two years, but it’s the sixth floor walk-up residents that are the lifeblood of the city. The ones who grew up in the city and chose to stay. The people who go to the same deli, take the same bus, and walk the same streets to and from their jobs day after day. Those are the people who decide if the city is alive or dead.
Click the arrow to take a look at some of my best and sweatiest NYC moments.
If you look on the city streets, they’re not the same. Sidewalks are crowded with tables from restaurants and bars. Subways are cleaner and starting to see riders again. New York City is stronger than ever. The city has felt the loss that COVID brought to its businesses and people, and NYC is choosing to rise back up. Those who fled are returning because the city we gave up on will always call us home. This city is constantly re-inventing itself and rising from the ashes like a Phoenix.
Unlike many other parts of the country, people actually wear masks here. If you’re walking around without a mask on, prepare yourself to be publicly shamed. No one is afraid to call you out for putting yourself and others at risk. Central Park is more popular than ever. Picnics are set, baseball games are played, and giant inflatable couches decorate the Great Lawn.
Does this sound like a city that is dead to you? It’s almost as if the country is watching and wants New York City to die. Tell them all they should expect disappointment. We won’t leave the greatest city in the world. It is coming back and is growing stronger by the day. The pandemic began a new chapter for New York City because it will adapt and thrive. It will move forward and stay strong for those who have lost in so many ways. New York City will never be dead.