1. Go with your best friend
Meet Sara, my high school sweetheart and my third sister who moved to Ottawa for university. Traveling with my BFF was on my bucket list for a while and we wanted to celebrate the end of a semester, and my birthday together. Most importantly, we wanted to catch up on a friendship separated by distance.
2. Get a flat tire in the first hour of your drive
Merci God for kind old French truckers, seriously.
3. Flirt with cute border security officers
Bonjour to you too, sir. Hon hon hon, love me some baguette.
4. Stay in a neighborhood far from Downtown
It was cheap so we thought we could just use the subway to get downtown. The Airbnb’s host said it would be 30 mins but it was over an hour commute.
Mistake A: NYC subways are a labyrinth compared to Toronto.
Mistake B: Remember, time over money. We only had two days so it would have been fine to invest in a place in Manhattan instead.
Mistake C: Weird neighborhoods = Weird people. Oh, who am I kidding, all of NY is weird a f.
5. Pack ramen, lots of ramen
Sara and I are pretty small in size and don’t eat much so we decided to save ourselves from the fatty junk that America is infamous for and eat the fatty junk we brought from Canada (ramen and BBQ chips). Also, we wanted to increase our shopping budget, so there’s that.
6. Get ticketed, three times in three days to be priciest
I am 21 and still cannot drive. Sara drove 12 hours both times in storm season, but I paid her back with a lit playlist and my promise to not sleep, both of which I broke. She rebelled by speeding. Three tickets, though, bye budget…
7. Order street food and freeze your fingers while eating it in the cold
NYC has these things called “Halal Carts” on every street corner. Sara got a hot dog and I got an overstuffed gyro in the arctic wind. I was never sure if I was eating my numb fingers or the cold naan. Yum.
8. Encourage your best friend to do stupid stuff
Go best friend, that’s my best friend. Is any trip complete without doing stupid stuff? Nope. We promised each other to never repeat it to others so keep wondering.
9. Take the road less traveled
Sara’s phone RIPed the night before we left Ottawa and mine had no data. We stopped at all the McDonald’s and Starbucks to get Google maps going. With that, we aimed to cross the Brooklyn Bridge on foot but ended up on the Manhattan Bridge instead. We saw the Brooklyn Bridge from there so consider it two bridges with one stone?
10. Go through McDonald’s drive-thru, twice
On our way back, we got a greasy Buttermilk chicken burger from Mcdonald’s at 10 am. After we ate it, we went back in line and got another. We were lovin’ it that much.
I made another video, shocker.
Check out part 1 and 2 of the series here:
December Diaries Part 1 in Toronto