New York City
Every year my family and I take a much needed vacation. This year we decided on New York City! New York City is truly a magical place. I love visiting places that have history and amazing food. There is so much to do in this city that eleven days was not enough to see it all. My first time in NYC was 2003 in my early twenties; two years after 9/11. In 2003 two of my childhood friends and I had a completely different agenda that included late nights, bars, and clubs with a side of sightseeing. In 2018, the GP (game plan) was the polar opposite. Get up early, wore comfortable shoes, packed snacks and hit the pavement to take in as much as we could in eleven days. We walked miles and miles each day. We even conquered the subway system, well sort of. We stood out like a sore thumb getting in the way of speed walking New Yorkers but survived; nonetheless.
So what did we do in eleven days?
Our first stop, Time Square . Immediate stimulation full of lights, people from all over the world, shops, street performers, savory aromas of delicious food, horns honking. It is a very active city and site. While in Time Square there were a couple of locations on the must see agenda. The first was the M&M’s World, Hershey’s Chocolate Store. If you love chocolate, or even if you don’t, this store is such a staple of Time Square. Literally my children were acting like kids in a candy store. After the chowing down on chocolate it was my turn to have some fun. I gave myself the gift of shopping at H&M. I’m a sucker for graphic tees. I picked up a few pieces just to warm up to the shopping I was prepared to do in the next few days.
Day two. We took the ferry to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. My first time in New York we only took the boat cruise around the island. That was good enough for three young ladies at the time. This time around, my family and I went the extra mile and climbed to the top of the crown of the Statue of Liberty. Check that off my bucket list.
After walking around the island, shopped for souvenirs, we got back on the ferry to our next destination, Ellis Island. Ellis Island was a “must do” for us. My husband’s family migrated from Poland in the 1800’s. We wanted to learned about his ancestors voyage to America and find their names in the registry. It took some time, texted back and forth between my mother-in-law but Jack was able to find records of his family in the registry! It was incredible to have found a little bit of history and honor those that came before him. Those that paved the way for the future generations that call America home.
Central Park was definitely one of my favorite places we visited.. There are so many hidden gems in Central Park. A statue of Alice in Wonderland , Belvedere Castle, carousel are just a few of the landmarks in Central Park. With so many acres of land it is easy to get lost and spend the whole day there. I could have spent the whole day here enjoying the sun and reading a good book.
Next to Central Park is The Metropolitan Museum of Art (The Met). If you like the arts, this is one place I recommend. The Met has artifacts from all over the world and different time periods. We were very lucky to be there during the Heavenly Bodies exhibition. It was the most amazing exhibition I have ever seen. Heavenly Bodies deserves it’s own blog that is coming soon.
We could not leave New York without visiting the 9/11 Memorial Museum. I will never forget the morning of September 11, 2001. I was living in Southern California getting ready for work. Every morning I would watch Good Day L.A to catch up on the news. Watching the towers collapse on the television screen was confusing. I couldn’t understand what was going on until the second tower was hit. To see remains of the stairs, the beams curled to unrecognizable shapes, debris that fell from the buildings in the memorial is beyond words. Walking through the rooms listening to the voicemails from passengers on the flight, looking at the pictures of all those who perished was very emotional. I mean the stories you will see and hear will bring you to tears. It’s a beautiful memorial honoring all those impacted and our great country.
New York is one of those cities that you need to visit at least once. I have one more visit on my bucket list to New York. My next visit will be in December to experience the magic of Christmas in the Big Apple. Stay tuned!