Monday, August 9, 2010

My Trip to New York (or...holy crap, I'm in New York!!!)


Welcome to my very first trip to New York City.  I'm going to try to not come off sounding like a blithering idiot as I try to describe what I've seen today, but at the same time, I have two words for this place.  Sensory overload!!  I don't think there is enough room on this website for me to tell you about everything I've looked at, heard, experienced, smelled....OK, well, maybe you don't want to know about all that I've smelled.....

...but you get the idea. we go from the top, hold on to your butt; I'll try to not lose you along the way.

Started off with a ride on a bus from DC:

Made our way through Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey into New York....

Behold....the skyline....

As I arrived at my destination, I emerged from the bus a little sore but excited by all that was around me.  The sounds of the city were intense--people chattering aimlessly, cars and taxis zooming by, horns honking from every direction.  It was invigorating, and overwhelming.  Then there were the sights.  The bus stopped just south of Times just a few short blocks walk and there I was immersed in the middle of so much activity, I didn't have enough brain capacity to absorb it all.  And just when I thought I couldn't handle any more....what did I catch out of the corner of my eye???

The Naked Cowboy!!!

Is there any better way to start a trip to New York???

So after a quick stop off at the hotel to drop off my bag and regroup, it was back out into the city.  Since there was no true plan for the day, the city just sort of directed my travel.

The city found me the Empire State Building:

Rockefeller Plaza:

The NBC studios (with a "shout out" to all my KVOA peoples...):

Some of New York's finest:

St. Patrick's Cathedral (I tried to get in, but I wasn't on the guest list at the door):

Tiffany's (because it's never too early to start shopping for my birthday):

The Tiffany Diamond and how good it would look on my finger

And Central Park (I kept thinking...this is how so many episodes of Law and Order start off...):

As I continued meandering through the city, it was amazing to come across landmarks that I'd only heard about but never seen:       

The city truly is amazing.  I found it absolutely astounding (coming last from California) how many people smoke here!  There's a puffer in each pack of people--I swear to you--and trust me, that's a lot of people.  I'm also amazed at the absolute assault on my eardrums from car horns.  Now, I'm a huge fan of the horn and believe it should be used often and liberally--but these people have me beat. I'm thinking there may be a secret "horn language" that the taxi drivers have amongst themselves to communicate with, but I haven't been able to crack the code yet if there is.

There's one other observation that I simply must share--and for those of you who have visited New York from other major metropolitan cities, maybe you'll agree with this.  One of the things that absolutely amazed me about Los Angeles is how drivers could navigate the freeway better than most.  Despite the immense traffic congestion, it was an amazing feat of choreography that millions of vehicles could pull off (relatively problem free all things considered) each day; driving in and out, changing from one lane to the next, freeway after freeway with nothing but little white lines to keep them from crashing into each other.  People in New York walking on the sidewalks and crossing intersections seem to have that same balance.  While talking on the phone, texting, or just not even looking at the path in front of them, these pedestrians confidently yet cautiously maneuver up and down thousands of feet of concrete a day.  I find that simply astounding before I sign off for the night, I have a few personal "shout outs" I simply have to share at this time.  First off....Michael H....MAJOR kudos for the dinner recommendation:

What would a trip to New York be without pizza??  (Andy....there's a slice in there for you)

Next....Leila....can I just tell you how good "Crack Pie" at Momofuku Milk Bar is?  I don't know what hype you've gotten....but trust lives up to it and beyond!!!!

Just in case you didn't believe in the name of this place!!
So that's day one in the city that never sleeps....which is kind of how my day is looking right now, since it's well after midnight and I'm still up and I'm planing on waking up in time to catch the sunrise over the city...