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Empire State

Written on: Friday December 21st, 2012

A journal entry from: Empire State

I figured it was better to post here later rather than never. Here is a quick recount of a recent trip to New York with Laure in December just before the Christmas Holidays.

About a month or two ahead of time Laure and I were talking and jokingly said to one and other "We should go to New York!" Well that is all it took, the seed was planted and the planning commenced.

I had previously gone to the Big Apple 4 yrs back, had a great time but did most of it as a solo journey. Since leaving New York the first time I knew I always wanted to go back and share the experience with someone special. You could go there 10 times and there would always be new places to see that you had never seen before.

I picked up Laure in Guelph after her last exam of the semester and we took the late overnight bus from Toronto to NYC. To be honest it was less than comfortable and a fairly exhausting way to travel, but nonetheless a good experience and certainly a cheap way to travel. *Approx $100 return!! (Hard to beat).

It was really cool to be travelling together with Laure. Ever since I met Laure, travel and culture had always been a strong part of our friendship and keeping us in touch over the years. I always thought to myself that this girl would be a great travel companion, but never figured we'd be travelling together. I can now say with confidence that I was dead on about that thought and I certainly wasn't disappointed!

Arriving in midtown, you are quick to realize the overwhelmingly large gap between the rich and the poor. Quite mind boggling to see such extremes! We stayed at a hotel called Park Central, that was situated 3 block south of Central Park and about 5 blocks North of Time Square. The location could not have been much better for getting around to the sights. We were lucky enough to check in to our room early and get a little rest followed by an afternoon stroll in Central Park (CP). It was a Sunday and the Park was just full of city dwellers and tourist alike enjoying the beautiful park located in the middle of a concrete jungle. Quite surreal and definitely highly recommended to see! I think it is safe to say that CP is easily my favourite part of NYC. We made it out to the park a couple of more times over the next few days, and on two occasions we would have only seen a small handful of people, which is quite amazing considering the roughly ten million people living within such close proximity to it.

Lots of sight seeing; Ferry cruise around the financial district and the Statue of Liberty, took in the sights from atop the Rockefeller building, lots and lots of walking and browsing etc... Did some shopping and of course compared and enjoyed numerous little cafes along the way. Enjoyed a couple of very nice evenings out in Tribeca, which turned out to be one of favourite little areas. So calm and quaint. There was an amazing whiskey lounge called the Brandy Library  that was quite spectacular with an amazing ambiance. As well as a lovely dinner out the following evening. On our way back to the hotel we decided to get off the subway a couple of stops early and walk the rest of the way to the hotel. It was raining quite hard, and we found ourselves nearly all alone in the middle of time square. It was a pretty neat and something I won't ever forget.

To cap it off on the last day, we managed to get a short run in together through the park, which was really too cool and heaps of fun!

That basically sums it up quickly, certainly worth a visit or two. Laure said it best; The buildings actually scrape the sky! I think that line says it all, and they are surreal and everywhere.

Looking forward to the next adventure,

All the best!

David W.