Growing up in New York with Manhattan as your stomping ground guarantees a few things:

1. You visit the Empire State Building (or other New York City attractions) only when out of town friends visit.
2. You talk fast.
3. You walk even faster.
4. You aren’t surprised by much.

But that doesn’t mean that sometimes, on occasion — you can’t be surprised by — or judge (shame! shame!) what other people find normal.

Like tonight when my guy said he didn’t have two vacations (Winter and Spring Break) like I did when he went to school but he did get a week off from school for deer hunting.

Right about the time he said that and my mouth opened wide from shock, he proceeded to do some sort of gesture that looked like a bow and arrow was in use. You know, to really shock the city girl.

I put my love for Bambi aside for a moment, tried to close my mouth and put things in perspective — AKA not be so quick to judge. Clearly, having days off for deer hunting might be normal in Ohio but it’s not the norm here in Manhattan. That doesn’t mean Manhattan doesn’t have a laundry list of things that are normal only to Native New Yorkers.

And while I’ve always thought of myself as an open minded city girl I have a feeling there will be many times in the future I will have to remind myself “don’t be so quick to judge”.

The possibility of stepping into a higher plane is quite real for everyone. It requires no force or effort or sacrifice. It involves little more than changing our ideas about what is normal. – Deepak Chopra


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