Parking in a City

I grew up on a dirt road, in the middle of nowhere. When I was accepted to a college in NYC there was no turning back (until I lived there for a year and was like, nah..) I was going to be a city girl. I didn’t miss my car in Queens. I didn’t miss my car in London.

The city I live in now is car city. And as such I have been forced to learn how to park like a city person, parallel to things. I’m not the best at it, I avoid my favorite cappuccino spot because of the street it is on has six lanes, which is like too many  lanes.

If I can park on a street, you can too, do as I do, tips follow.

Just go for it

Street spots are not always easy to come by, you can circle the block nine times and find nothing new, if you see a spot you have to take it. Just stop where you are, have a ten minute personal pep talk and gun it backwards into your spot. There is no need to signal, no one will be confused about what you are doing idling in the street. N o one will be angry at you holding up traffic.

If they are it’s their problem. I’m sure they have something they took 15 extra years to master. I bet they can’t even poach an egg…

Try, try again

If you don’t get into the spot the first time, pull forward, realign, and hit it again. You can do this as many times as you need. If the spot is a tight squeeze relax, breathe deep and ease it in, cars have bumpers for a reason.

If you live in a city where parking is limited people who park on the street expect dings and dents, it’s perfectly acceptable to judge your placement in a space by touching your neighbors bumpers with yours and then splitting the distance.

Let the curb be your guide

The whole idea of parallel parking is to get your car parallel to the curb. It tough on older, curvy streets but don’t let that intimidate you, use your mirrors and line it up.


A perfect example of street parking
 Be wary that it is best if you are within two feet of the curb, you don’t want to be in traffic. 

When in doubt, get out

Whether it’s to nab the perfect spot (you should probably let a passenger get out in this case) or to make sure the neighboring bumpers don’t bear any incriminating paint scrapes, get out. You can’t properly analyze a situation from within the situation. Get out and get perspective.

You’ll get it, one day.

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