New York

Everything I learned about NYC, I learned on the Grey Line tour bus.

You’re invited to ride along.

Times Square.
Because the NY Times was located in the building behind ‘the ball’ at the intersection.
Like Vegas only more squooshed.
Been there. Done that. Don’t need to do it again.

Not a location per se, but a direction.
If you are going anywhere north on Manhattan it is considered ‘uptown’.
Going south? It’s ‘downtown’.

“Up. Down. Cross. Town”.
I give it a 10. It has a great beat.

Columbus Circle.
The lower west corner of Central Park.

Look up!
Beautiful old architecture is everywhere!

The Dakota.
Named so for when it was built it was so far ‘uptown’ from the original populous in lower Manhattan that someone said it might as well be in Dakota. The builder knew a good marketing tool when he heard one and the name stuck.

It was also John Lennon’s birthday the next day and camera crews were setting up in Strawberry Fields across the street in Central Park. Strawberry Fields is a small renovated section Yoko Ono sponsored to the memory of John. There is a very pretty brass medallion with ‘Imagine’ displayed. It was filled with flowers as we walked by. Lovely.

Driving up Central Park West.

St. John the Divine, Harlem, on Amsterdam.
Duke Ellington’s service was here as was Luther Vandross’.

I loved these little neighborhood markets.
Everything was so pretty and inviting.

Did you know…

The difference between a deli and a delicatessen?
A deli has no place to sit down and eat. You order ‘to go’. A delicatessen has tables but you can also pick up to go. Therefore, you can have a deli in a delicatessen but you will never see a delicatessen in a deli. Got that?

Broadway Theaters
To be considered a ‘Broadway Theater’ it has to have a certain number of seats (which I don’t recall now). There are many theaters that meet this requirement but only 2 are actually located on Broadway. Most are on side streets like the Ambassador Theater where we saw Chicago.


Back at Central Park on the Bow Bridge.
I think it’s been in every NY based romantic comedy.
Next time, I am hitting every Upper West Side location from
“You’ve Got Mail”.

Funny, I didn’t see one other life guard hat in the entirety of Manhattan.

Every detail on this bridge was beautiful.

Are you still with me?
And we’re walking… walking…

… and fantasizing this was my city apartment.

The Plaza.

Now we’re headed ‘downtown’.
We pass the Flat Iron building…

…and continue down Broadway.
This was surreal as the streets narrowed.
This was the New York I wanted to see. Historical. More grit.

The wiring made me wonder what would happen if I plugged in my hairdryer.

Coming into the Cast Iron District.
The facades of the building were cast iron and very ornate. It was a cheaper way to fabricate the buildings as parts assembled like Legos. This was the original garment district where the typical sweat shops were located.

Look out! Whew. That was a low one!

The Woolworth Building.
Still on Broadway.

Now we’ve made it to Battery Park and the pier to catch the Circle Line for an hour tour of the harbor.

Bargains seemed to be everywhere on the street.
Everybody who’s anybody wears a scarf in NY, or so it seemed.
I saw them everywhere. Street vendors were selling them for $5 – $10.
People even wore them with shorts.
Glad I brought mine to fit in.
I think NY needs more pink, don’t you?
I was proud to contribute!

I got a great deal on this bridge too!

Mr. P.M.’s paternal grandparents came from Norway to Ellis Island.
I think he had a moment.

And no first-time NY trip would be complete without seeing this lady.

…and we’re walking… from the pier to Petra or at least this was my first impression of the NY Stock Exchange. We were on these tiny narrow streets where the sunlight could barely penetrate and we came around a corner and then… WOW!

Did you know…

That the street signs on Manhattan can tell you some very interesting things? If you look hard you can see that the street sign below is black. You will only find these in lower Manhattan as this means these streets were here before the American Revolution and since Manhattan was populated from this area up you will only find black street signs in this area of the island.

The key to other street signs are:

Green – Permanent
Blue – Temporary, usually to honor someone. No time limit.
Reddish brown – Historical

From where I took this photo, to the right, is where George Washington took his oath of office. There is a large statue of him there.

Looking straight ahead is the Trinity Church.

… and we’re walking…

The organist was playing. I lit a candle and gave thanks.

The rebuilding of the WTC is coming along. They are on the 40th story.
Our nephew works in the building to the right. They had an office bet going to see who picked the correct date of when the new building would block the view to the Brooklyn Bridge.

Directly across the street from Ground Zero is St. Paul’s Chapel. The British built it and all the wood work and flooring is original. The paint colors are also authentic to the original colors. This is the chapel Washington came to pray for 2 hours before taking his oath of office for his presidency.

This is also where all rescue crews set up base for rest and food during the 9/11 days. It is a miracle not one pane of glass was broken on 9/11. Given the historical significance of this building and what it has seen, New York considers this the heart of the city and is a symbol of the strength of its people.

The pews remain dismantled. There are memorials and mementos set up around wall’s parameters. It’s a small chapel but like a jewel box.

… and we’re walking… from the Financial District over to Little Italy and Mulberry Street.
We ate a wonderful lunch on the sidewalk at S.P.Q. R.
I kept thinking shouldn’t there be grocery vendors on the street like in the God Father?

However, I did see a man strutting around like he owned the place which made me think of Billy Joel’s “Big Man On Mulberry Street.”

Making it from the lower east side one morning from Katz’s Delicatessen, Orchard Street and the Tenement Museum (get tickets online) we had no idea where we were headed but found ourselves in a rough neighborhood on Bowery which I found out later was the old Five Points area (think Gangs of New York). I had enough of it so I saw a tree lined street off to the side and said, “We’re taking it.” It was Prince Street and took us over to charming SoHo.

One thing we learned about the city, one block in either direction on a street can have a huge impact to the tone of the neighborhood. Prince Street proved to be royal indeed. I’m so happy we stumbled upon it. Tony shops and little holes-in-the-wall.
We took it over to Broadway.

This little market was so charming and had the most beautiful flowers.

We also walked up to Washington Square where I learned this was once a hanging ground and there are 15,000 bodies buried in and around the square. The interesting facts just never stopped on this tour. They also found a former slave burial ground on Broadway as they were excavating for a building. I think this city has unimaginable stories yet to tell.

I’m already getting my list ready for next time but I need time to recoup.

I hope you enjoyed the tour! It was a pleasure having you come along.

This trip was brought to you by 3 boxes of Band-Aid Advanced Healing Blister Cushions.

“Don’t leave home without it.”

“I’ll Have Dessert To Go.”

Today was a day for a few firsts. In Laguna, it was the first time I had been there for lunch as I prefer going there for dinner to watch the sunset. It was the first time I had been to K’ya on top of the Casa de Camino hotel. It was the first time I have had a Salade Nicoise. It was the first time I had seen or tasted caper berries that were on stems and as big… [Read More]

Shots of Color Commentary

Last night while son2 took a break from finals and studying for AP’s and went to the movies to see Wolverine with some friends, Mr. P. Martini and I decided to try out a new sports bar in Ladera Ranch. I am not a sports bar kinda gal but I am an exceedingly good sport. While the choice of viewing entertainment was extensive with Dodgers and Angels games (one was almost rained out in the new Yankee stadium although I… [Read More]

“I’m Off To The Races”

Figuratively speaking, and will return after spring break. Have a lovely week.