New York City Observations (Part I)

Had the opportunity to spend 4 days in NYC last week. Being from the Chicago area, I’m always fascinate visiting NYC.

z2SHOPPERS, USE YOUR BRAKES

You have shoppers, mainly female, who barrel out of a store onto the sidewalk after shopping. They just shoot out onto the sidewalk to begin their next journey, unaware or uninterested in what they may run into. It happened at least 6 times while walking around NYC for a few days. It’s not intentional, however, they’re not being cognizant of the impact they have if they don’t look both ways and proceed with caution. It’s as though they were in another sphere while shopping and just at a given moment propel themselves onto the sidewalk. When this occurs, I’m grateful they are not driving a car. Do you imagine if they left a parking lot onto the street without looking or stopping before proceeding?

LIMO DRIVERS AND BELLHOPS

I’ll try not to be harsh but limo drivers, bellhops and hotel assistants sometimes get in the way while trying to help. Often, I’m moving luggage into or out of the trunk and they want to do their part even though I have it handled. Look, there are many customers who like this service, I just happen to be quite independent when it comes to air and land travel. Perhaps getting to know or evaluating how your customers may want to be assisted might help compliment these types of tasks.

WASHINGTON PARK SQUARE

zzzAfter spending the entire morning at the 9/11 Memorial Museum, we proceeded to walk north on Broadway towards Chelsea looking for restaurants that provide a good brunch on a glorious Saturday morning. After thoroughly enjoying omelets and dark French coffee at…we continued northward towards Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village. For whatever reason, something I had ingested did not sit well with me so I needed to find a restroom in Washington Square.

Good news and bad news. With the absence of many public restrooms in NYC, this well-known park obliged – and it didn’t cost any money. The bad news, there was only 1 stall, so you had up to 12 men in the queue for the stall. Speaking of costs, it unnecessarily costs many of us 10 to 20 minutes of our time. One toilet at this beautiful park that seemed to swallow thousands of visitors on this bright fall day. I wondered to myself how many complaints had been filed asking the park district to redesign these restrooms.

z4WTC PLAZA

My wife and I certainly wanted to pay the WTC plaza a visit and spend a few hours touring the 9/11 Memorial Museum. We arrived around 9 – 9:30 am to secure tickets although only two of the 5 ticket windows were open. As my wife patiently stood in line for about 30 minutes, I toured the WTC plaza, taking it all in and also taking some time to remember those who lost their lives in the 9/11 tragedy.

Besides the remembrance pool and dozens of visitors taking pictures, I struggled to find places to sit down and rest my legs.  I also notice no garbage containers anywhere in the plaza outside the museum. With vendors nearly on every street corner, one would think there should be plenty of containers to capture discarded materials. This may appear as a petty issue; however, as this plaza and museum are relatively new, there are some small and easy measures to take to improve the visitor experience.

CAN’T SMOKE IN CENTRAL PARK?

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To set the record straight, I am not a smoker. That applies to cigarettes, cigars, pipes, etc.. Having said that, I can’t say I hate smokers although smoke confined in small areas isn’t something I want to be exposed to regularly. I might say I’m pragmatic when it comes to smoking, I think smoking shouldn’t be allowed in most restaurants and bars although it might not be a bad idea to provide smokers a few bars and restaurants that welcome smokers.

CPWhen in NYC, I spent about 4 or 5 hours walking, browsing and taking in all the sounds and sights of this special park. Early in my visit to CP, I noticed a sign which said smoking is not allowed in Central Park. I realize there are many visitors to this park who are walking, running, and cycling so I get the healthy and pure aspect of this park. Because I wasn’t confronted by smoke, it was probably a good thing. However, I’m not sure why there can’t be a area for smokers? Designate one or two areas where visitors can go and enjoy a cigar or cigarette while watching the world go by. How it stands now, smokers seem to be confined to outside on a concrete slab outside a tall office building.

 

 

 

Kevin Schwarm

I have over 25 years of professional experience in business, information technology (IT), and customer service. Industry experience in retail, medical insurance, higher education, non-profit, financial services, and property and casualty insurance. Customer focused professional interested in providing value (save time, money and aggravation) by evaluating and analyzing information, services and products with a unique perspective.

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