Song recommendation – Billy Joel – Uptown Girl**
Halfway through my time in New York I was joined by a friend from work, Jon. We stayed in a great Airbnb in Brooklyn, only a short walk to the nearest Subway Station.
I initially played tour guide, giving a tour of some of the sights I had been shown by my pals Darien and Kevin.
Above – City Hall. Below – Grand Central Station.
Below – One World Trade Center.That first night, when Jon was super tired from the long trip, we went to an improv comedy show at the Upright Citizens Brigade. The show was fine, although they got a bit stuck on some jokes that weren’t that funny. It’s just one of the risks of improv I guess, at least with stand-up they have time to plan their jokes beforehand.
I’d heard that the view from the Rockefeller Center was better than the view from the Empire State Building. One of the reasons is that on the top of “the Rock” you actually get a view of the Empire State Building in the skyline. Given this, we decided we would just go up the Rockefeller Center, and that we would give the Empire State Building a miss.
We were fortunate that it was a clear day, which meant for stellar views (the Empire State Building is the one in the middle of the picture above). The only thing that made this ascent less cool was that I didn’t have my DSLR camera (fancy camera) on me.
Another thing about the view from the Rockefeller Center, was that there were places where you were actually outside (there was no glass).
I don’t think I’ve mentioned before, but I am a bit of a photography snob. I hate taking photos through glass. It just means that you get a poor quality photo, and often have a reflection artefact, which can be a pain to remove. One thing that irks me is taking photos in a car without winding down the windows, I mean come on, when are you ever going to look at that photo again.
Later in the trip we went to the One World Trade Center. I actually had my DSLR this time, but I was a bit disappointed that the only photos I could take were through the windows.
This one turned out well though! This is a view of Brooklyn (& the Brooklyn Bridge) from the top of the One World Trade Center.
We had good pizza at a place called Juliana’s Pizza in Brooklyn, close to the Brooklyn Bridge. I mean I wasn’t blown away, but it was decent. My favourite food in New York was doughnuts from a little place called Dough, also in Brooklyn.
We did a few other classic tourist activities:
– Visited the American Museum of Natural History
– Walked the Brooklyn Bridge
– Visited “the Met” (the Metropolitan Museum of Art)
– Saw more of Central Park
The best of these was definitely visiting “the Met”.
We also saw two Broadway shows, The Lion King, and Chicago. A lot of you have probably already seen The Lion King, and probably already know, but damn their costumes were on point. I would give the show a well earned 4 out of 5. One of my favourite songs in the show was their version of He Lives in You, which I continued to hum and sing for the next few days.
Chicago was interesting, a bit different from what I expected it, but I would give it a 3.5 out of 5. It was entertaining, but it lacked the “wow” factor.
I am an old soul. The reason I was in New York at that particular time, was because there was a Billy Joel concert on at Madison Square Garden. I went along to that, while Jon went off to watch another show, and I rocked out to Piano Man, We Didn’t Start the Fire, River of Dreams and many more of his hits. I think it was his 51st show at Madison Square Garden, which has a capacity of over twenty thousand! The night I went it was sold out, and the crowd was buzzing!There are two main ways of seeing the statue of liberty, one is to take the free ferry to Staten Island, which is what we did, or you can actually spend money and visit Liberty Island.
Above – Manhattan from the Staten Island ferry.
After ten days full of activities I was exhausted. It was time to head to the less population dense Buffalo to see some waterfalls.
Or so I thought . . . Dun. Dun. Dun.
**The reason for the song recommendation is that every time I read uptown on a subway sign, Uptown Girl popped into my head.