New York, New York! Old and New Friends

Trip Start Oct 04, 2011
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Trip End Mar 17, 2013


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Where I stayed
www.couchsurfing.org

Flag of United States  , New York
Saturday, May 19, 2012

By flying to New York we almost, ALMOST, earned $1000 to spend with American Airlines. We were waiting in the airport in Washington DC and over the tanoy they announced they needed 3 people to volunteer to fly to La Guardia because the flight was over booked. The would pay $500 in American Airline vouchers per volunteer. Marcelo and I weighed up the inconvenience with the gain and volunteered. Unfortunately 3 people did not show up for the flight so we didn't get $1000 in vouchers, which would have been really nice to have. 

We arrived fairly late and stayed at a discounted hotel with very rude receptionist who tried to be as unhelpful as possible. That was ok though because it was just one night. The rest of the trip we tried out something new called Couchsurfing. 
http://www.couchsurfing.org/  

When you join CouchSurfing, you tap into our network of welcoming people worldwide. You can share your hospitality and experience your city through new eyes by offering travelers a place to stay on their journey. You can bypass the typical hotel experience by staying at the home of a local and learning about their culture. You can join cool and interesting people for anything from a bike ride to a party using CouchSurfing Activities. And you can meet up with new people, whether at home or while traveling, for inspiring experiences and new friendships. 

People offer their couches, spare rooms or just their time with you for free. But not paying to stay in New York surprisingly was not the best part, meeting new like-minded people who want to tell you about thier city or show you around and sit and have good conversations with you for Marcelo and I has become the great thing about it. 

 In New York we stayed with Scott (you will see him in various photos) in the Upper East side of Manhattan. Scott is a very experienced host which was good for our first CS experience as we were very inexperienced guests. Scott made us feel very welcome and spent both days of his weekend showing us around New York, bringing us to all his favourite little hide aways. He even went far beyond the call of duty by accepting Gillian and Harry to stay one night with us in the apartment, in exchange for Harry playing some Jazz on the Piano for his Cat Luna.

It was great to see Gillian and Harry (who were in NYC for Harry's mum's birthday). If you don't know already, Gillian and I have been friends for 15 years and she was my Bridesmaid at my wedding.
They also very kindly carted back to Ireland some of our 'excess baggage' so we are no longer travelling like pack donkeys as the first photo shows. 

One of our favourite things to do in NYC was visit B&H video and photography store http://www.bhphotovideo.com/ . It is run by Orthadox Jews and is like being in a fantasy world of electronic equiptment. They have specialists for everything you can imagine, and they just push a button and a box comes wizzing around the store on a conveyor belt system with the product you are interested in buying. If your interested watch this video 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dmN6pBEfSIQ&feature=relmfu . 

Ok I'm going on a bit, the rest of the info should be in the photos. 

  
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