Sunday, October 31, 2010

Over the Manhattan Bridge to Times Square

After Leena and I got off the phone in the morning I re-prioritized my tasks, as the bank closed at 1pm and seemed like it had to be the first thing taken care of, before grocery shopping.  The nearest Bank of America branch is fifteen blocks down from here and one block over.  Normally it would be two subway stops, but this weekend the R train isn't running in Brooklyn due to maintenance, so I took the N one station and walked the remaining ten blocks.

It was a pleasant enough walk, not too hot, not too chilly and I got to see a little more of the neighborhood up there.

At the bank I had to wait about fifteen minutes for one of the account representatives to become free and then Jamall helped me.  I explained what I wanted, to convert my Advantage checking account to a MyAccess checking account, and he tried to do it on the computer...  Unfortunately it didn't go very smooth because my account was opened in Oregon and he was trying to do it in New York.  It's one bank, but there are variations for each state...  He tried several different bank programs and none of them would let him do it.  Then he got on the phone with a support person who suggested a few things, but none of those worked, either...  In the end he said he would put an "order" through and it would be processed at a central center somewhere by Tuesday.

I told him I'd just moved to New York City and he suggested a few things to do see around the city, some of which I've already seen...  He mentioned there's a special event for children going on this weekend in Central Park so that sounded like a perfect reason not to go there, for me, anyway...  Where I said I worked and every place I've walked he pointed out "there's a Bank of America branch right across the street" and "you should take a look at the Bank of America Tower near Times Square," as he seemed to know where all of the New York branches were...

Finishing up there I headed back out again and made a stop at a Rite Aid drug store for soap, a loofa and a few other items...  I'd been to a Rite Aid a few times closer to my apartment, but this was on the way, and the clerk offered to sign me up for their membership program, which was free, so that I can get a discount on things.  They never offered at the nearer one...

I dumped my stuff off at the apartment and then went out grocery shopping and got a bunch of things there for the coming week.  All set...

Back at the apartment with the groceries I wasn't sure where to go next and spent about an hour tinkering on the computers and browsing the web looking for ideas.  I was considering checking out Long Island City in Queens as the Wikipedia photo looks like it could be interesting.

In the end I decided I'd walk over the Manhattan Bridge and try out a camera accessory I got from Amazon last week.  The accessory is a fisheye and macro lens attachment for a regular lens, which at $40 I figured I'd try before spending $650 on a real fisheye lens...

Up until now I only took a few pictures in the apartment and at night, so they didn't come out well, since the regular lens with the fisheye and macro attachments is so long that it blocks a good bit of the camera's built-in flash and leaves a long shadow on everything...

So, I packed it up in my backpack, put on my sweater and headed out the door...  I walked up to 59th Street, five blocks away, where I could pick up the N train.  It was by far the absolute most crowded I've ever seen that platform, as it had all the people who would normally wait for the N plus the R trains, on a holiday weekend...

Several N trains went the opposite direction before we got one going towards Manhattan and everyone piled in.  Huge numbers of people got off it at 36th Street and then again at Atlantic Avenue.  In fact, I was so "in the train" that I forgot to get off at Atlantic Avenue where I wanted to walk up to the bridge...

At the next stop I remembered my plan, so I got off.  Out of the station I didn't really know where I was, but wandered a bit and then found Flatbush Avenue, which I know cuts a huge diagonal line through Brooklyn.  It leads directly to the Manhattan Bridge, for traffic, but not for pedestrians.  I walked around a bunch of blocks near the bridge before I finally found a sign pointing walkers to the Manhattan Bridge, then I just followed those till I got on it.

It was fun walking over it, with a different view than either of the others I've walked so far.  Unfortunately, though, it has a high fence along the walkway, for safety, so it made taking photos hard.  I had to stick the camera and lens through a narrow, horizontal gap between the original iron fence and the added chain link one above it, and it just barely fit.  That meant that I couldn't angle the camera up and down more than a tiny bit, which with the lens combination I was using didn't give a lot of range...

The subway trains that run over the bridge were also ear shatteringly loud when walking only a couple of feet beside them (with fences and what-not to keep them away).

A few other people were walking it and another photographer and I stopped and talked a few minutes about taking pictures from there.  He had a thick Nordic accent and with the noise of the trains I had a little trouble understanding him.

Coming down on the Manhattan side it seemed to be over Chinatown, based on all the Chinese writing on the signs and the smell, even high up on the bridge, of Chinese food.

As I got to the end of the bridge I put my camera away again, not sure how safe it is to carry it on the streets, at least not when I'm by myself.  Then I walked all over and around that area, working my way north, figuring I'd try out that lens at night at Times Square.

I found a public restroom in Washington Square Park and outside that a black squirrel came running off the lawn and I'd swear it was begging from me.  It ran right up to my feet, standing on its hind feet and looking right at my face with front paws slightly outstretched.  I fiddled around trying to get my iPhone out to take a picture and it moved a little closer and struck the same pose.  Then while I unlocked my iPhone it came closer yet again.  Finally, when I answered the iPhone's query to not connect to any available wi-fi and it was ready for me to take a photo, then the squirrel ran away, under a fence.  On the other side of the fence it did the same pose, but I couldn't get a good shot because the fence...

Around 20th Street, give or take a couple, near Madison Square Park I finally took the camera out again where I saw the Empire State Building up, overhead, and then in the park with some of the lighting sculptures.  I didn't even bother trying to photograph the squirrels running all over.  I saw lots of other people trying to, and mostly not getting shots as the squirrels wouldn't hold still and it seemed like they were having similar problems to the one I had earlier...

I walked up 5th Avenue until I came along side the Empire State Building, then walked on the cross street there (forgot which street it was, might've been 32nd, give or take a couple).  From the opposite side of the street I tried tinkering with various settings on the camera and photographing the building to see if I could get the camera to capture the late afternoon, cloudy sunlight reflecting off the windows, without being either sharper or blurrier than what my eyes saw.

Soon I came to Broadway, near Herald Square and worked my way up.  At Herald Square there just a narrow glimmer of bright lights coming down the street from Times Square, expanding the higher up I got on the streets...

At 42nd Street I remembered that Jamall at the bank mentioned the ice skating rink in Bryant Park was set up, so I figured I'd walk that direction and take a look.  It sure was, but the short time I stayed there no one was ice skating, only the zamboni was out on it, smoothing the ice...  So I walked a few more blocks closer to the Chrysler Building trying to see if I could get a good wide angle shot of it at night...

Then back to Times Square and lots of night photos.  Having offloaded them, the results are very mixed, mostly a bit substandard.  And it was crowded, so I think a lot of my photos have people close by in front of them (at my height it's hard not to in a big crowd).  A walk up and then back down and I was ready to head back to Brooklyn again...

Now I'm home...  Tired, especially my feet from all the walking...  But it was a good day.

After looking at all the photos with the fisheye attachment, I think they're mostly a bit fuzzy at the edges of any sharp lines, especially at the outer edges of the pictures.  It's obvious why it's only 5% of the price of a real fisheye lens.  Of course, the lens I have it attached to is my widest one, the 18-55mm kit lens that came with the camera, which is also the cheapest and lowest quality of my lenses, so that might not be helping, either.  I wonder if the results would be better attached to a better lens, however, none of my others are wide enough to give the full, circular fisheye result.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

A warm October Sunday in Central Park

Okay, a sort of busy and sleepy day today...  Yesterday I bought a large painting from an artist selling his work on a sidewalk in SoHo...  But no frame or anything like that...

After Leena and I got off the phone late in the morning, I went up and did my grocery shopping, no problems...  Then dumped them off at the apartment and headed out again.

My intention was to go to Staples near the Target and get some heavier clips, then head back and try to hang the painting with them before going out again.  Only I fell asleep on the train and missed the stop.  When I woke up I was in Manhattan.  So I figured I'd just continue on what I was going to in the afternoon...  I dozed off and on in the train till around 60th Street and Broadway where I got off.

I was a little disoriented and wandered around the block, half thinking of asking someone "hey, is there a park around here somewhere?" (the joke being that the nearest park is 50 blocks long and quite a few wide, not the sort of thing easily missed (and in the song Miss You, Mick Jagger even mentions it by name)).  But I found it and entered Central Park...

I wandered without much aim for a while, enjoying the shade.  It's not hot, but the chill we've had lately was gone, so it was comfortable short sleeve weather outside.  I got a pretzel at one place and continued walking a bit in the park.  I liked the big, green lawns and watching people playing ball games, as well as the scattered saxophone players all over.

The park is so big that looking north or south from many parts of it and the city outside is far, far in the distance...

That went on for a bit, until I wandered by the lake and kept comparing it to the lakes near my parents' house, and then into an "all natural" part called The Ramble, where it's supposed to be more natural than the rest of the park, but those two things just reminded me a lot of my parents' neighborhood, Sandpiper Village, but as only half-baked imitations (but then, Central Park is in the middle of a city, my parents' neighborhood is outside of the Waldport metropolitan area, surrounded by wilderness).

I headed out to Central Park West and walked down the blocks.  I passed the American Museum of Natural History that used to be my favorite museum as a kid, where I always just wanted to see the dinosaurs.  Somewhere around the 60's blocks I saw an interesting building off on a side street, so I walked that way.  It turned out to be Lincoln Center and I liked the fountain and sculpture there.  The steps all have LED displays in them so as you walk up you can see little notices about what shows are playing and things.

From there I headed on down Broadway, passing through Times Square where for at least ten blocks the street was blocked off and there were lots and lots and lots of booths on the street.  At each end of each block, on each side was one selling food, and in the middle a variety of things, hats, cell phone accessories, shawls and what-not...  The streets were jam packed with people and all the sellers repeated every other block, the same food items, the same tables of the same merchandise and so forth...  On a few blocks where guys with harnesses hold down gigantic balloons advertising Aeropostale clothing and outside that store someone was trying to give away 10% off coupons...

At 42nd Street I got off and headed into the subway to return to Brooklyn.  I slept a good bit of the way back on the train, again missing the station where Staples is located, and barely waking up at my own stop.

Back in the apartment I took a shower and settled in, but after a while felt like I should head out again for something...  So I looked up Staples online to see what their store hours were.  The one I planned to go to closed at 6pm, but there was a closer one near Fort Hamilton that closed at 7pm, and I hadn't been to the Fort Hamilton area at all, so that sounded like a good reason to head out.

I took the subway down there, getting off at 95th Street (only the trains and stations are so long I exited at 93rd Street).  Amazing...  The Verrazano-Narrows Bridge is just gigantic down there, filling the whole view to the south.    I wish I'd brought my camera for that.  It doesn't actually go there, but one of its towers is very close (or very, very big).

I found the Staples store and looked all over the basement floor to find the clips I wanted.  I got four packs of two each, which in hindsight was a couple short, I should've gotten six packs of them.  Upstairs I looked at the laptops and they had one on clearance for $350, which I thought at that price could make a good experimental machine for tinkering with other operating systems that I've been running in virtual machines for a while, but would like to try non-virtual (e.g. not Windows, not Mac OS X, but ones like Linux or Haiku (which yes, made a recent appearance in xkcd)).  Unfortunately they didn't have any in stock.  The sales guy said maybe tomorrow.

After I paid and left I got back into the subway at 93rd Street just as a train was coming in.  It's the last stop of the R train, so I got in but had to wait while the cleaners swept it and all that before it left.

Back at the apartment I got out the clips and hammered nails into the wood above the wall and hung up the painting.  It's not hanging great, but it's up...  I wish I'd gotten more clips...  I took a couple of photos with my iPhone...

The artist is Prawech Pranaprom.  Last weekend I was just walking around in Manhattan and passed by his sidewalk display and liked what I saw.  Throughout the week I kept thinking, I've got to go back and see again, and wondering how much would an artist charge for artwork being sold on a display on a sidewalk anyway? (okay, that turned out to be around three times what I expected and budgeted for, but we bargained and got it down a decent notch, only 66% over my budget...)

A highlight of the one non-silver black lightbulb in the painting.  It's black, with white arrows and lines that the artists said was "energy" (I won't disagree with his interpretation, it's what he had in mind when he painted it, and I like how it looked).

Now I'm just winding up the day and will be turning out the lights and going to bed in a bit...

Friday, October 22, 2010

UI Design Skills, Here and There

While us software developers in general don't have a good reputation for user interface design (and I'm no exception, either), I've found that developers in India are a bit worse than developers in the U.S. or U.K. (but I don't mean incapable of picking it up).  After nearly a decade in India I have a good idea why, too...

It's because of what we grow up using.  My generation and recent ones grown up with computers as kids, while India is still a bit behind on that, so we've had more years of experience both using computers and helping our older relatives do things on then than Indians have had.  More time to learn and understand what is really usable and what isn't.

But also, when it comes to other household and workplace user interfaces, in the U.S. we've become accustomed to better design.

Take light switches as an example, since that's a technological UI almost everyone uses...  In the U.S. if there's a bank of light switches you can usually rely on the order of the switches matching the location of the lights.  Not always, but usually.  Often there isn't a bank of switches, but one switch wherever it's appropriate for the light.

Not so in India...  Electricians in India are typically uneducated, low-paid laborers, who like most other laborers require a supervisor to scream and yell at them to get at least the minimum work done and simply aren't paid enough to care to do a good job.  That means that usually a switch will turn a light on, but there may not be any logic or pattern as to which switch works with which light, and getting an electrician to make a switch turn on a light may end up with another switch not turning anything on.

Time and again I've seen lots of people at their homes simply flip all the switches on and off until the right light comes on.  Even at my in-laws' house most of the family turns on the lights in the living room when they want the fan, then get up again when they notice and turn off the light and turn on the fan.

For example, in the Weikfield office bathroom (don't worry, I won't go into the gross details of bathrooms) there are a couple of stalls with the light switches on post between the two stalls, but the left switch is actually for the right stall and the right switch is for the left stall (in a simple ASCII art drawing, which doesn't draw perfectly right in the preview...):

|               |         |               |
|  +----------+ |         |  +----------+ |

|  |   left   | |         |  |   right  | |

|  |   stall  | |         |  |   stall  | |

|  |          | | +-+ +-+ |  |          | |
|  |          | | |R| |L| |  |          | |
|  |          | | +-+ +-+ |  |          | |
|  |          | |         |  |          | |
|  |          | |         |  |          | |
|  |          | |         |  |          | |
|  |          | |         |  |          | |
|  |          | |         |  |          | |
|  +----------+ |         |  +----------+ |  
|               |         |               |


I find it confusing.  Even more so because between the other pair of stalls the switches for the stalls are in the logical order, except there are three switches and the one farthest left is actually for an overhead light outside the stalls.  When I'm done in any of them, I always get nervous turning off the light because I don't want to inconvenience any other user of a stall in case I forget which switch is which, as they're not in the most logical locations.

The switch panels in my flat in India are even worse, they're much larger, with multiple rows of switches to control lights, fans, outlets and some "nothing at all," and they're organized even more randomly with no consistency between any of the rooms.  All the rooms have a pretty similar array of lights in the same places, although some rooms just have bare wires because the builder never actually fitted lights in those spots, yet the switches don't match at al.  Since I live here I've managed to simply memorize the key ones that I actually use.

So for those who grew up in India and are used to this, the expectation when using some sort of high tech interface is to just bang away until it does what it's supposed to, because the ones in daily life aren't arranged or designed in a logical, intuitive manner.

Falling Behind

Wow,  I realized I'm really falling behind nowadays...  It was easy to blog about my daily adventures during the couple of weeks when we had all the Jewish holidays and the office was closed Thursdays and Fridays, giving four day weekends...

But the last couple, with five day work weeks, and pushing myself to get up to speed at work, have made it harder to take the time.  Earlier to bed each night to try and be rested well enough for the next workday...

I have a few things in mind to write, I just need to make the time to do it...

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Headache Medicines

So, after the last follow-up with the neurophysician in Pune in which I asked him about getting completely off the medicines he'd prescribed for the nasty headache and migraines I was having, he agreed to lower the dosage, first to 10mg for a month and then cut it out.

The schedule worked out to stopping it sometime around now.  I didn't calculate the exact date, but having two four-day weekends in a row here in New York seemed good.  Tuesday night last week was the last time I took either of the medicines, figuring that would get me through Wednesday at work and if I had withdrawal issues I'd have four days to recover.

I didn't get a headache till Sunday, but even then it was pretty mild and didn't really interfere with my plans (about which I still need to process the photos and blog).  Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday this week I had headaches.

Monday was the worst of them, and I took four aspirin in the morning before work which helped ease it.  By later in the afternoon it was getting pretty bad and I felt a bit nauseas, too.  Going out after work to deposit my paycheck in the cool rain helped and I didn't notice the headache too much while I was doing that and eating pizza near the ATM.

Tuesday and Wednesday weren't so bad, but it was definitely there.

Today, however, I was in a rush to get out the door and grab a bag of garbage to take downstairs that I completely forgot the aspirin pills.  I didn't remember until I got to work and didn't have a headache at all.

So, this is good.  Hopefully the headaches are back under control again.  And hopefully the side effects will start easing off, too, especially that nonstop ringing in my ears.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

A Quest in Williamsburg, Brooklyn

So for today's wandering my mother actually gave me a quest, of sorts.  After she read an email about all my wandering everywhere, she suggested I go to the Williamsburg neighborhood here in Brooklyn and look for the apartment building her family lived in when she was born in the mid-40's.

She gave me the address 239 South 2nd Street, but said she thought it might've been torn down since she lived there (which wasn't very long, as her family moved quite a bit between Brooklyn and New Jersey, back and forth, but different places each time).

Then I looked at the MTA's website and examined the map of the subway system to see how to get to Williamsburg.  Good thing I didn't get an apartment there, the subway lines don't cross those that go to my office, except in Manhattan...  To get there from the apartment I had to go to Canal Street in Manhattan and transfer from the R to the J.

I took the J over the Williamsburg Bridge and got off at Marcy Avenue, which was close to South 5th Street and I new I had to go north.  It took a little walking and one wrong turn before I found South 2nd Street and the right blocks.  Unfortunately, the address my mother gave me didn't exist.  She said 239, but there was a 237, then right next to it a much newer building numbered 241.  Probably the old 239 and 241 had been torn down and one larger apartment building put up there, judging by the architecture, maybe in the 60s.

From there I wandered around Williamsburg a little.  There was a small park where I saw some guys, one with a camera, feeding pigeons, and more pigeons that I think I've seen at one time before, so I took a few photos of that.

When I was ready to head out of there, I found signs directing bicyclers onto the Williamsburg Bridge, so I followed those and ended up on the bike path on the bridge.  The sign clearly said no walkers, but I couldn't find any other obvious option, so I went on it, besides, there were other people walking up there, too.  As I got higher up I saw a parallel path on the other side of the bridge, with both walkers and bikers on it.

I took lots of photos on the bridge, of the bridge, and a few off the side.  Unfortunately the fences on the sides were much too high for me, so it was hard getting good photos outside of the bridge without fences in them.  A few places there was a little gap between sections of fence so I aimed my camera carefully through those to get a few decent photos.

A little after halfway over the bridge a number of bicyclists yelled at me for being on the bike path and not the walking path.  At the midway point there was a connection between the paths on both sides, so I went back to there and found the walking path that I was supposed to be on, and continued my walk.  It turns out that on the Manhattan side the paths are very clearly marked, include the part where they split into separate ones.  But on the Brooklyn side, they're completely separate entrances separated by a few streets and not so easy to find, hence my confusion...

Once over the bridge and into Manhattan, on the Lower East Side.  I made a quick turn off Delancey Street that I came in on in order to get some shade from the sun on a side street.  It's a really happening neighborhood there, lots and lots and lots of young people, restaurants, bars and shops of all kinds all over the place.  Very packed, especially the restaurants, I don't know if I saw any one of them that had any empty tables in sight of the front windows.

I just sort of wandered for a couple of hours, mostly staying a few blocks on either side of Broadway, working my way up.  Eventually I got uncomfortable, with my clothes getting a bit sweaty, and the worst was my undershorts sort of rode up a bit so my inner thighs were rubbing uncomfortably against my sweat-soaked jeans.

That was when I found the nearest subway station and headed back to Brooklyn so I could get a nice shower...

Friday, October 1, 2010

First Walk Home from Work, Wednesday

This is what I wrote to Leena after I walked home from work Wednesday afternoon...


Whew, am I tired now...

I closed up the office early, around 4:50pm, since the official closing time was 5:23pm, an hour before sunset and the start of a Jewish holiday.  I was the last one in for the final hour and a half, and only three of us were in at all during the day.

When I left the office I walked up to Eastern Parkway, about five blocks, where I usually turn right and walk a block to get on the subway at the Utica Avenue station.  But then partway to the subway I thought, "ah, it's a pleasant evening, not too hot, not cold, I'll walk up Eastern Parkway and get on the subway somewhere else."

I walked west on Eastern Parkway, quite some distance to where I thought it was intersecting with 9th Avenue, where I've walked around before.  I was mistaken, but didn't realize it at the time.  I thought I was near Grand Army Plaza, but I wasn't.

So, I made left turn on a street there, thinking I was somewhere else.  Granted, it was still the right direction, I was just farther from home that I thought.  I ended on the east side of Prospect Park, which is a gigantic park in Brooklyn.  The neighborhood on the eastern side of the park wasn't very nice but I figured it was still daylight so I should be safe enough.  At one intersection I crossed the street and into the park, figuring I'd simply cross through the park, and I know the neighborhood on the other side is a wealthy, nice one.

But inside the park the roads all curve, nothing goes straight, and since I was wearing sandals I was paying more attention to walking carefully on some of the dirt roads than the direction I was going (I'd swear, in the dirt it looked almost exactly like someone was wearing shoes made for a horse!), so I ended up exiting the park still on the east side, instead of crossing through it, though I didn't realize that till I got out of the park and found a nearby street sign.

It was then that I realized I didn't have a good idea of where I was.  It was mostly cloudy, so the it wasn't entirely clear where the sun was in the sky, but I found what seemed a bit brighter and figured that was pretty much west, and the street I was on outside the park was aiming a bit left of that, which is southwest and the direction I wanted to go.

I walked that way for quite some distance, till I came to the end of the park and a circle as an intersection, which I pretty much remembered from a map is the southernmost part of the park, and the right direction for me.  However, I wasn't sure which direction to go from the intersection, as there was a nearby freeway and big streets that I didn't recognize and I didn't recognize any of the street names there, so I was lost...

I picked a direction based on the sun and where I knew my destination, still a long distance off, was and walked that way until I saw some streets with names that really puzzled me.  I passed E. 8th Street, and then E. 7th Street, but in the opposite direction from which I expected the numbers to change, since I live on 54th Street, I wanted to see the numbers go up, not down!

From there I thought the E. on the signs might mean I was on the wrong side of a major street, so I walked over an overpass above the major street thinking the other side there'd be W. on the signs, but there wasn't, and then I saw E. 6th Street and got confused even further...

Ah, but the iPhone 4 has a compass!  I pulled it out and matched up the direction and new I was facing the right direction, even though the street numbers were going the opposite of what I wanted.  Definitely puzzling...

Ah, but the iPhone has a map program!  I pulled it out again and used the map, which uses GPS to know exactly where the phone is, accurate to a few meters.  It zoomed in on my exact location and I realized that the East numbered streets aren't part of the same numbering system as the directionless numbered streets, like 54th Street, and I was actually going the right way, I just wasn't yet into the area I knew...

As I walked, the iPhone figured out what direction I was walking and rotated the map so I could see where I was going on it and I planned out a route to take.  I was closer to home than I realized when I came out of the park, it's just that I didn't know the streets in that area.

Eventually I got pretty close to my neighborhood, a few streets up the hill from where I've been before, but I hit the numbered streets at 32nd Street, so at least I knew the direction was right and where to go.  By then I was sweating and rivers of it were running down my back under my shirt, which was nearly as drenched as if I wore it in the shower.

Around 45th Street I stopped in a small restaurant for a couple of slices of pizza.  Not as good as the one I keep going back to near my apartment, but I was really hungry and a little thirsty, plus my clothes were getting more and more uncomfortable from the sweating, and I knew I wouldn't want to stop and eat much further because of that.  And besides, I didn't know it wasn't going to be as good until after I got it...  Anyway, it wasn't bad pizza, just not the best.

After eating there I still had another 20 blocks or so to go in a zig zag pattern and it was well past sunset, so getting dark out.  I passed through other neighborhoods I hadn't seen before.  In one I saw lots of Jewish families heading out to holiday services, but dressed different than the Hasidic Jews in Crown Heights, with many of the men wearing big furry hats instead of black fedoras, which I've looked up and figure out where the Bobov branch of Hasidic Jews.

Then on 8th Avenue for a few blocks every single business had Chinese lettering on the windows and signs, and quite a few had not a single letter of English at all.  On 7th Avenue it was similar, but a bit more English in the mix, and on 6th Avenue, where I've walked before when going to Sunset Park, it was a mix of Chinese and Spanish, including some signs that had both and restaurants advertising Chinese and Mexican food (at the same restaurant...).

Finally 5th Avenue, which I know well enough and then down on 54th Street where I live...  And last, my apartment and a hot shower.