One of my biggest concerns about living in New York was being far from my garden (yes, I know), missing fresh air (yep), and not finding any way to connect with nature (my Connecticut is showing). As far as I can tell, everyone around here seeks that spot of green, but there’s a high likelihood of those spaces already being occupied by screaming kids, hobos, canoodlers, and Shih Tzus with Velcro sneakers (I can’t believe people do this), and these spaces won’t necessarily accommodate your ideal picnic or Frisbee toss.
So, while you might not be able to find that huge rolling landscape to lounge on, there are a few creative ways to wind some green into the New York machine.
Free Concerts in the Park: While you may not be totally alone here trying to tap into your transcendental side, these shows provide some great opportunities to unwind with friends, get some Vitamin D, and let some music amplify your outdoor experience.
Bond with Your Local Produce: If you’ve ever grown your own vegetables, you know what the good stuff looks and smells like. I want to gag every time I grab a bunch of tomatoes from a supermarket and they reek of chemicals and plastic wrap. As a great alternative, the Union Square Greenmarket aims to please, bringing real mom and pop veggies to your table. Your purchase supports local agriculture, the food is great, and you get to experience foods based on season (perhaps some you’ve never tried). While the market itself is busy, you can bring the wonderful great outdoors home to your own space. There are many other fresh markets, so check one out in your area!
Explore a Museum: At the Metropolitan Museum of Art, I had the pleasure of checking out Tomás Saraceno’s Cloud City. It was a gorgeous day on the roof garden, and the inside of that structure is the wildest, most disorienting adult funhouse I’ve ever experienced. Outside? Check. Having Fun? Check. Getting a beautiful vision of the city from the inside of a sculpture? Check. The best part is that only a few people are allowed up at a time, so you don’t feel rushed, and the experience feels very individual. If you’re feeling a bit less enthusiastic about those heights, there’s no harm in daydreaming to some Monet inside.