I went to New York!

Posted on October 20th, 2011 @ 20:46 in Travel

That was kinda predictable, was it not. I am yet to upload the pics to Flickr (I didn’t take that many), but I ought to write this before I forget all about what I did. [edit] Pics are now available.

Let me preclude this travelog by saying I absolutely love New York. Still. Or again, I am not sure. I think my last two visits (with mum, heh) were… well partly great (I remember loving the cycling), but partly not so much, and so there had been a slight worry that I might have fallen out of love. But I can now safely say I have not; in fact my love for NY is so great it is at risk of threatening Paris. Unthinkable, I know. I need a New York tattoo.

Right. So. What did I do. Where are my notes? I will be lost without my notes. Ah, here. I will keep this short. Ish. So I had rented a car to do a leaf-peeping mini-road-trip on the first weekend. This wasn’t a huge success in that the leaves were still pretty green, and it was soooo hot and I felt it was a bit of a waste to spend almost the whole time in a car. I was also panicking a bit about the thought of being stuck in traffic for ages. So I basically drove to Woodstock, walked around there a bit so I could say I’d been, and then drove back. *lol* I stayed in Suffern, some 30 miles outside of NYC I think, and then drove back into Madville fairly early on the Sunday morning. Next to no traffic at all! :D

Accomodation was with these guys in this room and it was really neat! Neat as in clean, and also neat as in cool. A++++ would visit again! My first two days in NYC were pretty much overshadowed by really horrible headaches, which not only made me feel headachy and sick and dizzy, but also really irritable and extremely down cuz I had no idea if they would last the whole week and basically ruin my trip. Fortunately they all but disappeared by day three. So here’s what I did!

Sunday I mainly just walked around, lay about in various parks (I did a lot of that on this trip), oh and I went back and forth on the Staten Island Ferry cuz I thought the fresh air might help my headache (it did not). The highlight (apart from the incredible weather) was the girl at the place where I stored my bag. I sort of got chatting to her cuz she was really nice to me when I dropped off my bag (after being pretty horrible to the people before me), and her story was… quite incredible. But I won’t tell it here. Suffice it to say I was highly entertained.

Monday I basically went to see the Columbus Day Parade (well, some of it) and to the Tenement Museum. I had a nap in Central Park and had a quick wander around the Highline, but mostly my headache made me hate everything and everyone, including my beloved New York. There was also lots of walking around. With a backpack, which I decided at the end of day two made my headaches worse.

Tuesday was my first cycling day, and that’s pretty much all I did. I had borrowed a (fairly old) bike (with no working gears) from my hosts. When I got back Ray was like “you went to Manhattan with that old thing??” Yes yes, I did, and not only that, I also went aaaaall over Manhattan! With some breaks in between. I didn’t use Runkeeper or anything so I don’t have an exact route, but I’d estimate I did about 20 miles at least. Over the Williamsburg Bridge, along the Hudson River Park Trail to 88th St, then back down through Central Park, and then basically zig-zagging my way back down to Lower Manhattan. This was also the first time I visited Occupy Wall Street – but not the last!

I absolutely loved loved loved OWS, though it’s difficult to put into words why. The sense of community I think, the disorganised organisation (that is, it looked messy, but it actually wasn’t), and also the hippieness of it all. And the diversity – there are not just young disheveled hippie types, there are also old people, people in suits, people that pop by after work… and there’s always something going on! Music, dancing, organising… and in the middle of it all there are people sleeping. :-) There is also definitely something I find exciting about the idea of a true grassroots revolution perhaps finally getting some traction, and there was some of that in the air at OWS, even tho ultimately I don’t dare to hope that this will really take off. But it should, oh it most definitely should! Eat the rich, seriously! :|

Okay. Wednesday (first day of not so great weather) I went to the Brooklyn Art Library to get some inspiration for my Sketchbook 2012 (it has been quite helpful, tho I have yet to start). I had a ticket for Top of the Rock (this was ok), also dipped into St Patricks, and then it drew me to OWS again where Amanda Palmer was doing one of her crazy street gigs. I posted a pic of her on Twitter and she retweeted it! Yay! Oh, and I went to Times Square for shopping and stuff, and it was supposed to turn all purple for Domestic Violence Month, but it didn’t really, only a few billboards.

Thursday was Met day. I hadn’t planned anything else, but this didn’t take me that long (well, 2.5hrs, which is quite long for me in a museum, even tho I only did 19th and 20th century European art, really. Well, sort of rushed through some of the other sections). And then more walking around, sorta from SoHo back to Midtown.

Friday was Bike Day II (my bum had needed a 2 day rest in between). Again, Zuccotti Park (OWS that is) because I had read on Twitter they were being evicted (they weren’t), and then up to the 5th Ave Apple Store for the iPhone Launch (this wasn’t my 1st Apple store visit btw). Theeen back down again, cycled around the various Villages (and had a big gay ice cream), up along the East River (which isn’t really a very nice ride, but had to be done), and back down to OWS again. Where I got into a crazy rain shower and got soaked soaked soaked. So then I pedalled home to Brooklyn. Very wet. It was ok tho. Once I’d changed into dry clothes I went to the Brooklyn Art Library again (which was only like 5mins by bike from where I was staying).

Finally. *sigh* Saturday was Sad-day (tho sunny again!). I don’t do last days very well, cuz I mostly wander around going “wah, I need to leave soon, wah, this is so sad!” Which is what I did. All day long. *lol* I mean, I didn’t constantly think “that is so sad”, but I did walk around all day. And ended up on Times Square for the big Occupy demo again (kinda by chance), where I also saw some Zombiewalk zombies… and then I had to leave before it got really interesting. :-(

Yeah. It’s so weird when you were somewhere you really love and then you’re not anymore. But you still remember being there! But you won’t be there again for a while. But eventually you will! Am looking at going again in May. Or maybe June so it’s even warmer, hehe. Anyone wanna come? :D

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