New York, New York!

Trip Start Jan 20, 2012
Trip End Mar 18, 2012

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Flag of United States  , New York
Saturday, March 10, 2012

We have been in New York for nine days now and have become very familiar most of the touristy areas. We have walked the through the flower, jewellery and fashion districts. The fashion district has streets of fabric stores and students in cafes doing sketches.

I booked tickets to an exhibition but didn't tell James what it was about until we got there. It was called 'Dialogue in the Dark’. We were in a group of eight and we each got one of those canes with the ball on the end and we went through a door into TOTAL darkness. We were met by a man called Romeo who was our guide for tour. His job was to led us through a series of scenarios in New York in total darkness using our canes and instinct. It was amazing that Romeo learnt ALL our names in a few minutes and knew exactly where each one of us were during the whole experience. He took us through a Central Park scenario that included navigating over a bridge, walking on a rocky path, touching water from a fountain and touching trees and plants. The next scenario was in a grocery store that included various items on shelves and a fridge. We had to try and guess what some of the items were. We were then lead to a subway and got onto a train which included walking up a rather steep set of stairs. All the scenarios we went into had sounds and smells. At one stage we could see a little bit of light and Romeo knew straight way by the way we were moving, so he quickly turned off the ‘light leak’. Staff were watching all of us using night vision remotely just in case someone couldn’t handle it and wanted to leave. You can image the staff laughing at all of us! Our last stop was into a coffee shop where we got to ask Romeo questions about this blindness as the lights slowly turned on. The whole experience was absolutely amazing. I thought Romeo would be an older African American man but he turned out to be 35 years old. He has been blind since birth. There were grown men who got very nervous about the experience and ended up sitting out.  James enjoyed going through experience especially when we saw we got a cane each (but would never enjoy being blind for real!) and said I picked a ‘goodie’!

We have also been to Grand Central Station which is very pretty building. We found a bakery in the station which baked cupcakes on the premises so we each got one and they were the most delicious cupcakes ever! I also had to try a piece of pecan pie! There are many homeless people in the station probably because it’s dry and nice and warm. They don’t seem to cause any problems except take all the seats.

Our visit to the United Nations was also very interesting. We got an hour tour of the building and saw where general assembly meet.

We have been up the Empire State Building to see the view. It’s a popular attraction and took a good hour to get up there.

Ice skating at Rockefeller Centre was an interesting experience. I can’t say I enjoyed it because I keep thinking about breaking my ankles, the hospital visit and how fun it would be in Hawaii with a broken ankle. It was really hard, so I was on the ice for only 10 mins. James liked it and did better than me. Have a look at the video I uploaded!

After the ice skating we were walking back to the hotel when a pigeon did a huge poo from a high rise building and the poo went all over both of us. When I heard the sound I knew exactly what it was. I had a beanie on and I felt it plop on my head. We were both in shock and just stood there for a few minutes trying to be inconspicuous and to work out what to do next. It was on James’ jacket, arms, in the hood and down his back. I had it on my beanie, down my jeans and on my scarf…how disgusting! It was pretty cold and I had to strip off down to my dirty jeans and long sleeved T shirt. I suggested to James that maybe we could get a taxi home but that was met with silence so I took that as a no and he made we walk home freezing cold while he had his nice warm jacket on! Everything went into the wash straight away and then I feel asleep for the rest of the afternoon while James had some of his own time watching movies on the laptop. An eventful day!

We had breakfast in the East Village yesterday which is one the outer edge of town and is more of a residential area with old brick high rise apartments. The breakfast place was very popular so we had to wait outside on the street for a table. New Yorkers will wait in line for ages if the place is good. Once we got inside it had a lovely atmosphere.

Another show we saw was called, Fuerz babruta (or "Brute Force," in English) it was described as being a completely non-verbal performance with music, dance, acrobatics, aerial imagery and some awe-inspiring visual displays and set designs. The show started with us walking into a space that looked more like a night club than a theatre and we all stood in the centre. There wasn’t a stage, per se, as the action happened around, above and next to us. You needed to stand for the entire show (1 hour) and everyone was moved to make way for raised platforms and other changing scenery. Cast members, most of who were dripping wet, mingle with the crowd and encourage you to join in their tribal dancing and shouting. One of the scenes has a man running on a treadmill really fast and he gets cover in water with a high pressure hose and blow with a high powered fan. He then runs through a series of walls made out of white paper. In another scene you had to look up at a huge see through pool that was lowered to audience’s height so you could touch the bottom and cast members then swam on the bottom. It all ended up with a techno dance party and the DJ spraying everyone with a high pressure hose again. A very weird show and we still can’t figure out if we liked it or not!

I haven’t told you about everything we have done in New York because it is a lot! I’ve uploaded a few photos of things we have seen and have written a bit next to them. Seeing all the shows was the best thing and seeing all the sights you see in movies. We saw Central Park on a horse and cart which was nice but because it’s winter, it really wasn’t that pretty. Central Park in the only place that would be better in summer.

Our last night in New York was spent up on Rockefeller Plaza looking at the city at night. We got some beautiful photos. On the way home we got our final dinner – a classic cheese burger with fries and some of our favourite vanilla cupcakes from Magnolia Bakery on Broadway.

Make sure you watch the video at the end of the phot album.

Next stop Hawaii and then home! I’m starting to miss my dog and my own bed!
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Jimbo, the natural athlete.

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