I’m writing this at 7am, having been up since 6, due to slight jetlag. Flying west has meant that I’m up early, refreshed and ready to go each day, so it’s been quite handy really!
New York is surprisingly easy to handle on a small budget. Our hostel, the New York Budget Inn is great – reasonably priced and a 5 minute walk from the Emprie State Building. We’re in bunk beds, but that’s fine because there’s so much room for activities! We’ve given ourselves a budget of $50 each per day, which has to cover all food and any attractions. Street food has been mega cheap, we’ve used the subway to keep costs down, and the only other bits we’ve paid for so far are the Empire State and game at Madison Square Garden.
Yesterday we started by visiting the flat iron building, then took the ferry over to Statten Island, which takes you past the Statue of Liberty and allows you to see Manhatten from the water. It was a really nice clear day for it. We then came back in land and went to visit Ground Zero.
I really wasn’t prepared for my reaction to the site of the Twin Towers. New York is so rammmed with enormous sky scrapers that the empty space where the towers were is absolutely vast. In place of their foundations are enormous waterfalls which flow down creating yet more negative space. The size of it is just so massive that it made my chest feel heavy. Around the edge are the names of everyone who died, placed next to their friends, or people they were with on 9/11.
We then walked along the Brooklyn Bridge, which was great, it’s such an iconic structure. It was a boiling hot day!
The next thing we found was the High Line, recommended to us by the lovely Charlotte and Mark. It’s an old rail track that runs above the ground, and was used to transport goods around the city until the 1950s. Now, it has been transformed into a park space with loads of plants and great views. There’s also this giant Lego installation with 2 tonnes of white bricks where you can build your own skyline…. Interestingly there were only adults using it haha.
In the evening we went to see the women’s basketball, New York Liberty vs Conneticut Sun at Madison Square Garden. After much confusion on my part (“is it baseball or basketball? Do they hit the ball with a bat?!) I have to say I had such an entertaining evening. Great atmosphere in such an iconic venue. My short attention span was satisfied by the way the game kept stopping and starting with interludes for “dance cam” where they zoom in on members of the audience dancing, dance troops running into the court and a huge dancing dog mascot.
We wandered to Time Square to see it by night, and then went home to bed.
Something that made me laugh:
Tom and the lucky balls.