Manhattan

Trip Start Sep 05, 2010
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Trip End Dec 06, 2010


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Flag of United States  , New York
Monday, September 6, 2010

I hopped on the train into Manhattan this morning. I quite like the metro system here. The stations are not stupidly close together like they are in Paris and the carriages are larger than at home.

First stop was Union Square Green Market. I rather like markets, that is probably my dad's fault. I love all the colours and the feeling that normal people come here too, not just tourists. I bought some blackberries and a bottle of fresh apple juice which I sipped as I strolled up Broadway.

I was a beautiful day today with brilliant blue skies and walking though New York was simply glorious. Walking up 5th Avenue I spotted the Empire State Building in the distance. What is particularly nice is that many of the sky scrapers (wonderful phrase) have really beautiful facades. I hoped to have a peek inside the New York Public Library (I wanted to go find some random old favorite and read for half an hour, just because) but unfortunately it was closed for Labour Day. Grand Central Station, nearby was a fitting substitute. Really impressive inside with a beautiful ceiling, though somehow it felt strangely new.

From Grand Central Station I walked up Madison Avenue, then across to Central Park. I think Central Park is my favorite place in New York so far. Unlike many parks in London it is full of trees which looked beautiful against the brilliant blue sky. I sat next to a pond and ate my blackberries, listening to someone playing a saxophone nearby. The park has quite a few performers playing around the place. One man standing on the Mall made enormous bubbles. On the corner of another path a young man played the drums. A woman with a fantastic voice stood under a bridge where her song echoed slightly.

After a brief lunch of a pretzel and a bottle of coke I wandered into the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It has some really interesting Egyptian pieces, including The Temple of Dendur, moved stone by stone to save it from rising water due to the construction of a dam. Apparently many tombs and temples were going to be permanently submerged by this dam. The Egyptian government appealed to the USA for funds to save these monuments in exchange for one of them.

Another area of the museum I liked was the period rooms. These were rooms set up to look like ones around New York might have looked 150 years ago. I liked them as I walked around imagining Beth sitting by the small piano, Amy by the fire, with Meg on the sofa and Jo in the big armchair. Every parlor was where Katy Carr sat and directed the household. In the courtyard nearby was a rather wonderful collection of statues, including a golden one of Diana.

Before I left I wandered around the European art rooms. There are a few paintings by Van Gogh in the collection, including 'A Wheatfield With Cypresses'. I rather like Van Gogh and self portraits but most other art I can happily miss. Self portraits always have such interesting expressions in their eyes. Looking at huge landscapes on the other hand, somewhere in the back of my mind I am always thinking "this would make a great puzzle".

On the way back to the hostel I walked across Brooklyn Bridge. It is a very good way of seeing Manhattan. Excellent view. From there I picked my stuff up and headed over to Penn station to take a train up Long Island to see Lloyd. On the way I missed two trains just so I could take the A train one stop.

Lloyd's friends are really friendly. We drove Lloyd mad with the triangle game and I got to see a video of him doing Karaoke. Go club tonight and I am quite excited though I'm sure I'm going to be incredibly rusty. Until next time . . .

 
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Comments

James Head on

So jealous, not of the wonderful experiences you're having, but of you having a working tube :p Ruddy tube strike... grr...

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