I’m on the Amtrak en route to Boston, my last stop on this 2 week US East Coast jaunt of mine. The last three days & four nights in New York City have been great. I knew they would be. It doesn’t take much to appease me here; NYC has been my favourite world city forever so just being there is sufficient. Being honest I didn’t get up to much – I took some photographs whenever I wasn’t in Yankee Stadium, which was most of the time (& needless to say I took some pictures when I was there, too). In fact, it seems I took a lot of pictures over the last few days. I’m really only getting around to reviewing them now. There’s quite so here are 27 pictures from the last 3 days in NYC, still the best city on earth.
New York City || Day 1
New York City. It’s good to see you again, friend. It has been a while. Far too long. I took the following picture from across the Hudson river in New Jersey as I approached the city earlier this evening on the bus coming to the end of a smooth ride from Baltimore.
The setting sun was illuminating the skyline, which looked great set against the ominous-looking dark-blue clouds (it didn’t rain). This was my first glimpse of Manhattan in over six years – it was a nice one, a nice welcome back. It was also my first time seeing One World Trade Centre, formally the Freedom Tower, the primary building of the new World Trade Centre complex – needless to say I’ll be down there before too long with my camera firmly pointed upwards. This is my eight visit to the city since my first visit way back in the summer of 1998. That was my very first trip outside of Europe, my first (what felt like) real independent travelling experience. I’ve had something of an affinity with NYC ever since – it’s still my favourite city on earth, and I’ve been to my fair share of those over the years. Since that first visit 15 years ago I’ve come here to do some Christmas shopping (1999); to experience a NYC St. Patrick’s Day (2000); to watch baseball games (2001); to pay homage after 9/11 (2001); I stopped by at the end of an LA-NYC road trip (2003); & I passed through en route to an old life in Canada (2007), the last time I was in the city.
— davidMbyrne.com (@ByrneDavidM) July 12, 2013
It has been said before but it’s true – there’s a buzz here that just invigorates. I’ve always felt it & I’m feeling it again. Having only just arrived, I’ve already been reacquainted with the rush of the city, the diversity of its residents & the smell of the subway which, at $2.50 a ride these days, is a tad more expensive than I remember it being. But this is New York City and everything here is expensive; $60 for a dorm bed in my hostel (Jazz on The Park, where I have always called home when in the city) says it all.
What am I going to do here for the next 3 days, 4 nights? I’m not sure yet but whatever I do will be scheduled around baseball games. Tickets for Yankees games in the new 4-year-old Yankee Stadium on all three days – Friday through Sunday – are booked (& I don’t even know who they are playing, not that it matters). Aside from that I’ll get up early, go to bed late and in between I’ll just revel in all that is NYC. I’ll probably do a bit shopping (NYC will reveal the inner shopper you never knew was in there) will probably pick a museum or two to visit & will, of course, take (a lot of) pictures. Best get into it so. New York City, take nine.
New York City || Day 2
It was an overcast July day in NYC, not a great day for photography. I took a walk across the Brooklyn Bridge into downtown & paid the first of three visits to Yankee Stadium in The Bronx.
The Brooklyn Bridge
The Brooklyn Bridge is one of the oldest suspension bridges in the United States. Completed in 1883, it spans the East River to connect the boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn, two of New York City’s 5 boroughs.
— davidMbyrne.com (@ByrneDavidM) July 12, 2013
(The New) Yankee Stadium – Take 1
New York City || Day 3
Back to Yankee Stadium, Grand Central Station/Terminal & Times Square.
(The New) Yankee Stadium – Take 2
Grand Central Station/Terminal
Completed in 1913, in the heyday of American long-distance passenger rail travel, Grand Central Station/Terminal is, according to Wikipedia, the largest train station in the world by number of platforms: 44, with 67 tracks along them on two levels. It has been described as ‘the world’s loveliest station’ and it certainly receives its fair share of attention – 20 million visitors a year make this one of the most visited tourist attractions in the world.
A quote on the walls of Grand Central Station/Terminal.
– Billy Collins, b. 1941
Times Square, the brightly illuminated hub of the Broadway Theatre District & one of the world’s busiest commercial & pedestrian intersections in the middle of one of the world’s major entertainment centres.
New York City || Day 4
One final outing to Yankee Stadium & a visit to The National September 11 Memorial.
— davidMbyrne.com (@ByrneDavidM) July 14, 2013
(The New) Yankee Stadium – Take 3
From Yankee Stadium on this day it was back to Manhattan, via the subway, for a visit the poignant National September 11 Memorial.
The National September 11 Memorial
The National September 11 Memorial honors the 2,983 men, women, and children killed in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and February 26, 1993 – of that number, 2,977 came from 90 different nations and 400 were first responders who died performing their sworn duties. The victims perished at three different sites – at the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia, at the crash site of Flight 93 in a field in western Pennsylvania, & here in lower Manhattan, where the majority of the victims died & where today the poignant National September 11 Memorial stands in memory of them.
Signs abound at the Memorial requesting people to Respect this place, a place made sacred through tragic loss. To me that was a given but I was taken aback by the jovial mood of the Memorial hordes. People didn’t seem to realise or care too much about the significance of the site, with people happy to pose with big smiles in front of the Memorial pools. Really. That didn’t sit right with me – if you want to be a tourist, go get your picture in front of the the Statue of Liberty, or in Times Square, or in Central Park.
Video || The National September 11 Memorial
Video taken overlooking the North Pool of the Memorial.
New York, New York
Thank you NYC. You’ve been great, as usual, and you’re still the best god damn city on earth. Period. Until next time (& I promise I won’t leave it as long before I’m back).