This woman has hit the motherload as far as harvesting Ginkgo biloba fruit goes. These large specimens were indeed female and had a substantial, smelly bounty.
New Yorkers may not know this tree, nor know that there are female and male specimens, but they have probably smelled the ginkgo before. The smell is most aptly described as similar to vomit or dog waste, or a mix of the both. That doesn't prevent people like the woman in the photo - protected with latex gloves - from collecting the fruit. Ginkgo biloba is traditionally used by Asian cultures for tea and, of course, is a popular herbal remedy (promoting brain power) at the drugstore.
Now is as good a time as any to note that calling this a fruit is in fact a misnomer - ginkgoes are gymnosperms, which means that they are not flowering plants. Despite the fact they are broadleaved deciduous plants, they have more in common with a pine or a spruce than an oak or maple. Technically the woman in the first photo is collecting 'naked seeds.' Gymnosperms are more primitive plants than angiosperms (flowering plants) and the ginkgo's evolutionary history dates back over 150 million years. It is a living fossil.
Despite its homeopathic applications, female ginkgo trees are not commonly planted - 'never plant a female ginkgo' could be considered the horticultural equivalent of 'don't spit in the wind' - and they are on the Parks Department's list of noxious plants. Instead, the male plants are used, as the tree is nonetheless beautiful and, for the same reason that it has survived for so many millions of years, is very tolerant to urban conditions like pollution, compaction and drought.