August in the City Has Its Upside

The French game Petanque, one of the city's summer treats, can be played in Bryant Park.

Summer in the city can often be miserable, but the weather this year has made it downright pleasant — and with school still out and many people away on vacation, there are a few unexpected perks to being stuck in New York.

Chris French Cleaners in East Village is much less busy in August than other times of the year.
Chris French Cleaners in East Village is much less busy in August than at other times of the year. While wedding dress alterations can take six weeks other times of the year, the shop can alter a wedding dress in less than two weeks in August.

There are no lunch lines at the East Village ramen joint Ippudo in August. A real boon for New Yorkers stuck in the city.
There are no lunch lines at the East Village ramen joint Ippudo in August, which is a real boon for New Yorkers stuck in the city. On a recent afternoon, the lunch rush was little more than a trickle. Ippudo staff said dinner can still be crowded, but there are no wait times at lunch this month.

A West Village post office is unusually quiet in August.
A West Village post office is unusually quiet. Robbie Busch, who sells vinyl records online, is accustomed to waiting up to 45 minutes at other times of year, but said In August, "It's just in and out."

Petanque players in Bryant Park take advantage of the lazy afternoons to work on their game in late August.
The French game Petanque can be played in Bryant Park for free. There are metal balls available to use Monday through Friday — on the weekends, it's BYOB, bring your own boules.