Thursday, July 19, 2012
New York Part Two
On our second (and last) full day in NYC, Emily and I took a Circle Line cruise! I had booked the three-hour tour - they have several shorter tours, but I wanted to go all the way around the island. I doubted we'd make it far north on our own, so I could at least see those places from the water. First we swung past Ellis Island (where I know some of my ancestors came through):
And Lady Liberty:
Seeing the Statue of Liberty in person was very moving. Of course I've seen a million pictures of it, but being there was different. I think I took a picture from every angle! It's beautiful.
The guide said this was the "authentic view" because it's how the immigrants saw it. :)
We also went under the East River bridges. The bike tour guide taught us BMW to remember the bridges: Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Williamsburg. That helped me a lot!
I'm told this is an important hospital. Whatever, it's really the building Jason Bourne jumped out of to freedom. :) (Among other things, NYC taught me that some fiction is more real to me than reality. I should be more troubled by this.)
As we headed north, the river got much narrower and shallower, and we had to slow down a lot. We saw Harlem on the left and the Bronx on the right. There were fewer people and more trees.
At the northernmost point of Manhattan, there was a train bridge too low to pass under, so we were told it would open for us. Em and I went out onto the bow for a closer look. In my South Florida experience, bridges open vertically, so I was a little alarmed as we got closer and closer to the bridge with no drawbridge action. Then I saw it was swinging open like a gate. Pretty cool.
Sarah e-mailed me to ask if I wanted to meet. Sarah and I were LiveJournal friends for several years and now keep in touch via blogs and Twitter. We decided lunch on Friday would work well, so after Em and I got off the boat, we met her at a little Mexican place in SoHo. It was great to meet in person, catch up, and talk book stuff - she's in publishing and surprised me with an ARC that I'm really excited about. :) Yay for online friends!
I couldn't go to SoHo and not shop, so after lunch Em and I hit a few stores. I understand now why people take special trips to New York just to shop. The sheer volume of merchandise and people overwhelmed me, and I wasn't really in the right headspace for it, so I just made a few bargain purchases at Uniqlo. I'll have to try again another time. It was fun though!
Emily's husband Daniel really wanted us to see Rock of Ages (the play, not the movie), so he got online and bought us tickets the night before! Thanks again Daniel! :) He's seen it three times and even has a designated pre-show restaurant, the Blue Fin in Times Square. So we ate a delicious meal there and went to the show. (I have no pictures of this night because my camera battery died suddenly.)
If you're extremely conservative, Rock of Ages may not be for you... but if you have fond memories of late 80s hair bands and are part of the Wayne's World generation, YOU WILL LOVE IT. Who knew a tale of rock and debauchery on the Sunset Strip could make me feel so great and hopeful about life? I even downloaded the original Broadway soundtrack when I got home.
After the show, we got Pinkberry (for me) and pizza (for Em) and walked around some more. Even around midnight, the streets were still packed with people and most places were still open. I knew New York never sleeps, but it's different to see it for yourself. I felt excited and thankful to be a part of it.
One more trip installment to come!