Always be aware of your surroundings. That is some great advice that most of us have either heard or offered to our kids at one time or another. Not letting your guard down, especially in a public place or situation can be very helpful and, in some cases, save your life. But every now and again, you might be take by surprise and have to remind yourself of that important advice.

Recently, there has been a string of thefts reported in New York City that are taking the victims by surprise. There have always been purse snatchers and smash and grab cases. But the new method thieves are using is spooky.

Because of their ability to weave in and out of traffic and also zip up and down a busy sidewalk, thieves are using mopeds or scooters to drive up and snatch a purse or attack a victim and steal what they can before a quick getaway. It is scary because the attacks happen quickly and, like most busy cities, there are mopeds and scooters everywhere!

Just this past weekend, another encounter was reported. Police say a woman was walking on East 89th Street Saturday afternoon near the Guggenheim Museum when two men on mopeds approached and tried to grab a woman's necklace.

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On the list, there's a robust mix of offerings from great schools and nightlife to high walkability and public parks. Some areas have enjoyed rapid growth thanks to new businesses moving to the area, while others offer glimpses into area history with well-preserved architecture and museums. Keep reading to see if your hometown made the list.

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