New York - Friday

Trip Start Jul 02, 2012
Trip End Oct 04, 2012

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Flag of United States  , New York
Friday, August 3, 2012

Friday dawned hot and clear. We went across the road to the market and had the best breakfast yet – waffles, pancakes and an omelette respectively plus fresh orange juice squeezed in a machine they'd just got the day before which will squeeze a carton of oranges in 3 minutes.

 We had a tour guide lined up for our first day and he took us down to Central Park where we walked through Strawberry Fields, the garden dedicated to John Lennon and designed by Yoko Ono.  We had just come past their apartment where John was shot and Yoko still lives today which was quite surreal.
The temperature was already 32 deg but the humidity made it feel like 40deg so at that point Richard and Michael went back to the air conditioned comfort of the hotel and explored the area around there while I went on with the guide and covered miles on foot and by Subway.  It was mind blowing!  We walked through the Chelsea Markets, across the Highline (a redeveloped elevated railway), through the Meatpacking District, West Village, Greenwich, Soho, Noho, Nolita, Little Italy, then onto the subway down to the Financial District.  Greg the guide was a mine of information and seeing Wall Street, the NY Stock Exchange and the statue of the charging bull was fantastic and quite surreal.  We walked past the World Trade Centre site where the new buildings are well under way and will be completed by 2014.  We didn’t linger there so will return another time for a better look although it felt a bit strange hanging around the scene of such a tragedy – perhaps it is the experience of Feb 22 which gives us the awareness of the loss and personal impact of such an event, making it much more than just a curiosity to ogle at.
After a fascinating explanation on the history of Wall Street and that area, we caught another subway back to Grand Central Terminal and then walked down past the NY Public Library, City Hall and the Chrysler building.  Saying goodbye to Greg, I got on the subway at Times Square and head back to the hotel where I collapsed into the shower, a sweat-drenched mess!!  It was an amazing introduction to the city, so many people, so much to see and take in – words and photos just can’t do justice to the sheer size of the place.  Everywhere we went there were places, people and things to look at, wonder about and marvel at.  Truly a sensory smorgasbord!

  Meeting up with Richard and Michael again, the 3 of us took the subway across to Brooklyn where we were able to buy half price tickets to Broadway Shows.  We decided on the Mary Poppins show tomorrow which will be lots of fun – another tick for the value of using Trip Advisor – the queue for tickets at Times Square was more than a block long whereas by going a bit further down to Brooklyn, we walked straight up to the window – woohoo!

Navigating the subway back was a fun challenge as they were all packed, but we made it back with no mishaps and picked up some dinner on the way.

It was a great first day and we’re looking forward to ticking some of our must sees off the list tomorrow.
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