The city isnt a ghost town yet but small businesses are hurting for customers as polite pedestrians avoid physical contact
Running through Manhattan from the Battery to the Bronx, Broadway is New York Citys lifeline. So in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak and the raft of restrictive measures being implemented across the city and the state in an attempt to contain it it seems like a good place to check the prevailing mood.
It doesnt bode well when, on the 4 train down to Wall Street, a busker with a guitar performs a song featuring the words coronavirus everywhere you turn. Other than that, and the presence of a few face masks and latex gloves, everything appears relatively normal.
Above ground, its grey and mild. While its not heaving, New York is definitely not a ghost town. There are people milling around and tourists lining up as usual to take selfies with the Charging Bull, the bronze sculpture which sums up the spirit of nearby Wall Street.
The first person I encounter is Tim Lamch, 38, who with a huge bag on his back and pushing a fully loaded drinks trolley, makes a surreal sight. Is this coronavirus related?
I just happen to be moving during coronavirus, he says. Im only moving two blocks.
The account executive, currently working from home because of the virus, says its busier than he had anticipated.
People need to be out. People dont want to be cooped up and people still have to work. Not everyone can work from home.
At the bull, tourist Liliana Oropeza, 44, is lining up with her husband and 10-year-old son. The family, from Monterrey, Mexico, are trying to make the best of the situation but so far, she says, their holiday has been awful.
We bought tickets and cant use them because the museums are closed. We are trying to move our flight home to maybe Monday.