Braving the crowded, confusing streets of Manhattan in my trusty Hyundai, I searched the narrow, one-way streets of the Lower East Side for a parking spot. I was in no mood to pay $35 or more for a garage. Searching hard for a vacant space between the lines of parked cars, I tried to block out the honking taxi cabs behind me, trying to rush me out of their way. But you have to drive slow, because if you're driving too fast when you see a spot and overshoot it, you're out of luck by the time you drive around the block and get back to it. The fire hydrant spaces are the trickiest. All that room by the curb, and what a waste! Park there, and expect a hefty fine. I know this from experience.
At last, up ahead. Could it be? Wait, is it a fire hydrant space? Nope! It's all mine! Time to parallel park. Slowing down, lining up with the passenger door of the front car. Oh that taxi driver is angry. Honking doesn't make me park faster! I have a flash of doubt. Can I make it? Is this meant for a compact car? Oh well. Gonna go for it. Now comes the fun part. Reverse, turn wheel, drive, turn wheel the other way. Repeat. Back and forth. Slowly inching my way into the blank spot of this cramped puzzle. At last. I'm in. No scratches, fender benders, bumper bumps, or mirror swipes.
When I got out, a man walked out the front door of a coffee shop that was located directly next to my car. Apparently, he had been sitting inside at his table, sipping his coffee, and watching the entire thing. He passed by me with a minimal nod and simply said the word, "Skill."
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