Sunday, February 8, 2009

New York Odyssey



My youngest son and baby was 21 in 2007 and we went to NY for a few days.It really is the city that never sleeps and impossible to see in the time we had, but we fitted in as much as we could.We did the uptown bus tour, the downtown bus tour and took the ferry out to the statue of Liberty and visited Ellis Island and of course shopped.We stayed on 7th Ave just a few minutes walk from Times Sq and found it very easy to navigate around the way the streets are numbered.We got off the tour bus at Central Pk and went into the Natural History Museum mainly because we were frozen on the bus! We could have spent hours in there,B. has long red hair which drew comments a few times.People asked was he Scottish or Irish and we saw the only other red haired person we encountered in NY, because it was Thanksgiving lots of schoolchildren were queueing to go in to the museum and one little girl there had a head of curly red hair! Central park is an oasis in the hustle and bustle of the city and the autumn (fall) colours of the trees were fantastic.

We got a taxi down to the Twin Towers site.It was an eerie feeling standing where as we had watched on TV so many perished that fateful day.It was a railed off building site when we were there and I am not sure if any permanent memorial has risen since then. There is a tiny church to the side almost unnoticed among the skyscrapers, I cannot think of the name of it now. The church is there since about 1740 surrounded by a churchyard where overgrown headstones bear testimony to its long history.It was unscathed in the events of 911 and it was where exhausted firefighters,police and helpers lay down to get a few minutes sleep and volunteers brought food and drink for them.The interior is quiet and peaceful and this photo is of one altar where just a fraction of the missing people photos have been brought for safe keeping. There is another one piled high with badges of visiting firemen and police from all over the world who have left them as a symbol of sympathy and solidarity with their colleagues who perished that day.It was the only place where there was a sense of reverance to pray for all who died and lost friends and family in 911.

We waited in Battery park for the ferry to Ellis Island and this Jamaican was entertaining the crowd with songs and banter. When he spotted B. he started on him about his red hair and when he discovered he was Irish he launched in to a selection of Irish songs to great applause from the crowd.We got the ferry around the Statue of Liberty and visited Ellis Island through which thousands of Irish people entered the US. It fell into disrepair in the 50's but is now a heritage site.If you have the name of relation who went through there they may be able to find it in the archives and give you a certificate, showing their passage details and ship.

This is the naked cowboy who busks on Times Sq, the film was not the only thing over exposed!Imagine my surprise a couple of weeks ago sitting down to watch our local TV talk show when who walked on in all his glory only the same naked cowboy! He was visiting Ireland at the invitation of a company promoting enterprenurship!!






It was Thanksgiving when we were in NY.The thousands of people on the streets were amazing, I read they estimated an extra 3 million people were in NY for the day.I woke around 5.00am and looked out the window, the streets were full of families going to get a position to watch the famous Macy's parade.We went up to the top of the Empire State building and saw some of the parade from there.The next day was called black Thursday for some reason and sales started at 5.00am, again the streets were full of people at 6.00am laden down with shopping bags!There were street sellers lining the streets selling handbags and the litter that was strewn all over the place was unbelievable but had mysteriously disappeared early the next morning.We did not get to see a show on Broadway as the screen writers strike was going on at the time.The lights were on but the doors were shut.
It was amazing to see all the places we had seen on TV or on the news and actually be there,it was definitely an experience in terms of sound and crowds and I could do 10 posts or more on what we saw, maybe some day B. will go back but for me it was a once in a lifetime experience.

9 comments:

Darla said...

What an experience indeed!!!

W. Latane Barton said...

I love New York. So glad you got to visit and see the most interesting and amazing city anywhere. At least I think so.

My daughter lived in New York and when I would visit I just loved the hustle and bustle, the cabs honking, the store windows everything. Don't get to go to the city much anymore as she moved out of the city after she married.

Your memories sure brought back a ton of them for me as well.

Lynda said...

Thanks for this lovely post, Peggy - sounds as though you had a wonderful time. I've never been to America but it is on our short list of places to visit on an upcoming holiday. Oh my, you had me smiling at the naked cowboy - only in the USA, 'eh ?!

Linda Jordan said...

Hey Mom,
Love the photo's, especially the very first one. The colours are gorgeous. I came across this amazing blog that I thought you might be interested in, especially due to your penchant for teacosies.
http://wildforteacosies.blogspot.com/
Enjoy.

Linda

Barbarapc said...

Very neat shot of the Macy's day parade. A good sale day on "Black Friday" means the retailer will move his ledger from red to black - hence the name - although some folks have nicknamed it black and blue friday because of the feisty crowds. I'd forgotten about the naked cowboy - what a chuckle. NYC really is grand.

Peggy said...

Hi everyone, thanks for all the comments on NY.It is an unforgettable experience for anyone who has been there.Barbarapc thanks for clearing up the black friday puzzle, you are right black and blue fri would be better named!

Goldmember said...

I just loved New York.

Worked there for several months back in 2003 when the world seemed to be in fast forward.

Hope you enjoyed your time there

Caz

flowergardengirl said...

I loved reading every word of your visit. Isn't it grand to be with your grown children? I adore my kids. Mine are grown too. I have one 25 and married and the other is 27.

I've only been to NYC once and wold love to go back. Looks like you stayed in a very high place. The view was grand. I laughed at your pic with the cowboy. Wasn't he cold?

The Tile Lady said...

Great NY photos, and I enjoyed reading about your trip! I was so surprised to learn that was not a cardboard cutout of a naked cowboy, but a real guy! :-) Well, thanks so much for your comment about the contrails on my blog! Yes, it did look like a game of naughts and crosses (tick-tack-toe to us in US) in that third photo! :-)