Handbags! Cell Phone Cases! Sesame Chicken!

And to think, we saw it all around Mulberry Street this weekend.

This past Sunday, our girls’ high school group began with a big decision to be made by our members. Where would be we go, and what would we do? Our members came up with great outing options, such as going to the Museum of Natural History, visiting Central Park, attending the Farmer’s Market in Union Square, or exploring Chinatown. Although it was a tough decision to make, after a vote, the majority decision was to travel to Chinatown. Our members did a wonderful job of being flexible to a changing schedule and all were in great spirits when we began discussing our travel route.

Our members used the app Moovit to find the speediest route to our exploration location. The group decided that our best option was to take the 6 Train downtown to Canal Street (the heart of Chinatown). Once we were all ready, we left our meeting location and walked a short distance to the downtown 6 Train. During our walk to the subway our members took this opportunity to get to know one of our newer group facilitators and hold various conversations with each other. In a short time we were walking down the stairs to the subway. With full fare Metro Cards in hand, our group was able to jump on the approaching Downtown 6, and continue our journey to Chinatown.

Once aboard the train, some of our group members were curious about the stops we would be passing while enroot. Our group facilitators assisted the girls in reading the subway line map on the inner wall of the train car. Our members were able to find the subway line that we were currently on and discuss the stops we would pass until we reached Canal Street. Once we discussed the stops we would pass, one of our group members facilitated a discussion of other subway lines that she takes to school and her home.

In what seemed like no time we arrived at Canal Street and were out exploring the street-side stores. As we were venturing from one store front to the next we discussed where we would should have lunch. One of our group facilitators suggested Joe’s Shanghai restaurant on Pell Street. Our group members agreed on this lunch restaurant and then decided to use Google Maps to gain the walking directions to this location. The directions told us that we would walk a short distance up Canal Street, take a right on Mott Street, and then a left onto Pell Street. Our group split up into two smaller group, led by group facilitators, in order to effectively navigate the crowded streets, while managing to stay together. On our walk the girls stopped in many shops and saw a lot of new, culturally diverse environments.

When we arrived at Joe’s Shanghai, we were met with a less then appetizing sign, which read “C”. We took this opportunity to discuss what this letter in the restaurant’s window meant. Although we did not know the specific reasons for the health department’s C rating, we decided that finding a restaurant with an A might be better. Luckily Joe’s Ginger restaurant was right down Pell Street with a large A rating on their door. While at the restaurant the girls took their time selecting menu items that were both delicious and cost efficient. Our members were cooperative, shared with each other, and remained open-minded. Many of our members even tried some new, exciting foods. When our bill came, all members had enough money to cover their expenses and some even had funds remaining!

After we ate we used the app Moovit again to aid on our return trip to our meeting location. We decided to take the 6 Train uptown to 83rd street. On our way to the train some of our girls were able to get a great deal on beautiful cell phone cases. When we arrived to the subway station, the 6 Train was leaving. Although this was unfortunate, our members did not panic and instead brainstormed a new, faster route, which was to take the 4 Express Train to 83rd Street instead.

Overall, our day was a great success. We are eagerly awaiting our next outing.

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