You know how I said in my previous post that I’m going to try and not stretch out these USA trip posts into mile long articles? Yeah, I lied.
I’ll start with a confession. When we first started planning our stay in NYC I figured that six days was more than enough to see almost everything there is to see tourist wise. We quickly realized we couldn’t be more wrong and while I think we still got to see quite a bit we skipped out on quite a few usual tourist hotspots such as the Empire State Building and the Brooklyn Bridge.
I think what I didn’t take into consideration while I planned our trip is how tired and jet lagged we were going to be, not to mention we seriously miscalculated Manhattan distances during the first three days, which basically meant this:
Me: So we’re on 29th and 5th Avenue now, wanna walk down to Soho?
Vid: Sure, it’s only what…20 or something blocks?
New Yorkers: What a bunch of tourist idiots.
(And when we were done, we walked back to our hotel in Gramercy, on 29th and Park Avenue. Dumbasses)
I tried to convince the bf to grab one of those Citi bikes, which are quickly becoming the hottest mean of transportation in Manhattan but he wouldn’t hear of it. Apparently he’s partisan of simply walking until your legs go numb.
It’s not just the walking though. We were very serious about our museums. We went to the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Guggenheim on our first day, while we were still fresh. At least we planned that well because in my books you need to be fresh for the Met. I could spend hours in there. There was also the Punk: Chaos to Couture exhibition (running through August 14), which was stunning and an obvious must see for any fashion couture lover.
We went through the Guggenheim a little faster, though we did stick around and admired the James Turell light installation in the lobby, which was breathtakingly mesmerizing. We missed the Kandinsky in Paris exhibition because it started a day after our visit, which was somewhat of a bummer but some of his work is still on display in the regular galleries.
On Thursday we went to the American Museum of Natural History and I’m ashamed to say that even though I lived in NYC for four months, I’ve never gone there before. Needless to say I had the time of my life and I think that the AMNH is one of those places Lara would have a blast at as well. Dinosaurs, North American and African Mammals exhibitions, journey to the stars and volcanoes – it’s all totally worth it.
After the AMNH we walked around the Upper West Side down to Lincoln Center, which is one of my favorite parts of Manhattan and where I mostly hung out when I lived there.
We went to the MoMA separately on Friday, admittedly because I wanted to experience the Rain Room. Little did I know that in order to do that you have to stand in line for 5 or more hours unless you’re a member or clever enough to be there at 8.30 AM. Luckily enough we could still see the exhibition (we only waited 15 minutes for that) but we couldn’t walk under the rain ourselves. The Rain Room expo ends the 28th of July so if you’re planning on or are in NYC, get your butt on over there. And of course after you’re done with the museum part of MoMA, you absolutely have to check out their design store; it’s pretty cool.
On Saturday we checked out Tribeca, where one of my friends lives, and then we took a walk to Ground Zero. At that point we’ve sobered up a little in terms of our excessive walking and took a cab to Nolita (North of Little Italy) for lunch and then some shopping in Soho.
Sunday, which was our last day in NYC, was all about Central Park and the Upper East Side so we made sure we covered our grounds well. It was hot as hell out there but it was also really beautiful.
On Sunday night, as we started our drive up towards Boston, we were kind of sad to leave NYC behind but I’m so glad we got around to doing this trip. I lived and worked in Manhattan for a few months but it’s entirely different to experience the city from a more calming tourist perspective. Sure when you live or work there you kind of take the city as your own but admittedly I rarely stopped and looked around me to see how beautiful it really was. At the time I found it almost too much, too overbearing, too intense; Manhattan never stops. This time around I really took the time to admire it and see all the amazing things it has to offer and I realized that even though it’s constantly busy, it’s also bustling with this incredible energy that makes it pretty darn awesome.