Day in the Country
Trip Start Apr 01, 2008
33Trip End Jun 30, 2008
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Yesterday was another miserably cold day and so we only really got moving at around midday. After getting ready we decided to head out on the Ellis Island Ferry to view the Statue of Liberty up close and visit the Ellis island museum. However, it seems that's what the rest of Manhattan had decided to do as well, so after standing in an endless queue and being subjected to yet another bloody ridiculous security screening we only got about an hour to look through the Ellis Island museum. After having put up with the indignity of LAX security I really thought that we had experienced the worst, however, this one took the prize... Requiring you to take off everything including watch, sunglasses and jewelery. What constantly suprises me is how enthusastic most Americans seem to be about these ridiculous security measures, forever commenting on how much safer they feel after clearing these screenings
After Ellis Island Simone sent us on a bit of a challenging quest to find a non-existent Resturant in a non-existent lane where we were supposed to be meeting them for dinner. However, we, being the old hands that we are now, passed this test with flying colours, successfully finding 'Freemans 'on Freeman Alley (as opposed to 'Rivingtons' on Rivington lane) and beating Team Ex Pats there by a good 30 minutes (some excuse about a lost wallet... Rookie mistake...). Freemans is a resturant that is hidden down the end of one of the few alleyways in Manhattan and specialises in Game meats. So, of course, Tim and Simone wanted to take me there. The internal décor consisted of deer, pig and moose heads, stuffed geese and various animal skulls hanging on the walls. Having slipped Gaynor another pill she was more then happy to come along and so we had a fantastic meal consisting of many different animals in various states of distress. Having eaten ourselves silly yet again we took the subway home and collapsed once more into bed.
We woke up this morning and decided that we needed a break from the maddening crowds of Manhattan, so today we skipped town for Poughkeepsie. Other than the fact that it had a cool sounding name we knew nothing about the place other then it was the furthest most stop on the Metro-North line and Tim had suggested that it would be a good day trip... The train left from Grand Central and we travelled up the Hudson river for an hour or so giving us a fantastic view of greater New York, decaying industrial centres and the mighty Hudson river
After such an interesting train journey Poughkeepsie was a bit dissapointing. The redeeming feature being that it looks to be one of the many declining American industrial centres in the North East so we could almost believe that we were in Baltimore (one of our favourite shows being 'The Wire'). A look at the tourist information booth in the train station quickly told us that they don't receive many tourists and there is not much to see. Undeterred we went for our own little exploration of the place. It was nice to have the sidewalk to oneself for the first time in many days, even if we did feel a bit conspicuous being the only tourists, or white people for that matter. We also experienced our first hill since we left Sydney and after struggling up our first slope I have decided that it is very civilised to flatten all hills before building any town or city. Anyway, after wandering the streets for a couple of hours and being flabbergasted by the number of churches one small city can support and with nothing much else to see other than more grand old residential buildings in rapid decline we jumped on a train and headed back to civilisation.