July 15th, 2010 by Cherié
On the Town in New York City
Ever since I was little girl, I loved watching musicals so it comes to no surprise that “On the Town” with Gene Kelly and Frank Sinatra would be one of my favorite films. In the beginning three sailors are on leave, however they only have 24 hours to see the city… In a way I can relate- seeing that I only had 48 hours to see New York City (with the exception of travel days). The movie always stuck with me, I just HAD to see all the places that were in the film, Rockefeller Plaza, the Empire State Building, and so on. A weekend in New York is not a long time, but I was determined to see it and boy what a time it was..
Everywhere you go you instantly recognize iconic spots from film, the news, even in books. You see the Empire state building, and you are instantly reminded of Sleepless in Seattle where Tom Hanks character finally meets Meg Ryans character on the top of the Empire state building. Even I thought that, I looked around secretly hoping I will bump into Tom Hanks. Alas, I didn’t. We decided to go at night, after the #TBEX conference. I thought it would be easy to get there, I was wrong. After navigating the complicated subway system, we realized we were lost and had gotten off the wrong station. Despite a new yorkers directions- even though she was kind and helpful we still got lost. She said, when you get out of the station the Empire State Building should be right there. It wasn’t. We walked for what seemed to be about an hour before we finally found a place to eat for dinner, and then to the actual building. The view was breathtaking. A man played the saxophone with a bowl next to him for change. I felt lucky to be here, and lucky for the fact that I had a Hearing Aid to help me hear this beautiful music on the top of the Empire State Building.
I woke up at 8 in the morning, got ready for another day at the #TBEX conference. The heat was sweltering, hot and humid. Entering the sauna that was the subway station. We bought our tickets at the kiosk, the single ride which was about $2.50. I didn’t get the week long card, seeing that I was only there for the weekend and the metro card was about 20 something. But the downside was every time you wanted to go to the subway, you had to pay $2.50 all over again whether you were heading uptown or downtown. Thank goodness the trains had air conditioning! I finally made it to the conference, mingled, learned quite a bit. While everyone was hanging out, I decided to meet @JasonTravels at the Rockefeller center at the end of the day. It would be my last night in New York- I was leaving in the morning. I wanted to get as much sightseeing in. I thought taking the taxi would be better, and easier than navigating the system. We had gotten lost, and I didn’t want to get lost yet again in the city on my last night in New York. I have to say I loved seeing the Plaza, the skating rink transformed into a restaurant for the summer. I can’t wait to go back in the Winter and actually skate on the rink. I couldn’t help but imagine Gene Kelly and Frank Sinatra in the beginning of the movie singing
New York, New York, a helluva town.
The Bronx is up, but the Battery’s down.
The people ride in a hole in the groun’.
New York, New York, it’s a helluva town!-(On the Town, 1949)
I got lost again. @JasonTravels texted me saying he was in the building and told me that a bus of 100+ tourist was making their way to the line. So I walked in the front of the building, I looked around and no Jason. I walked and walked, even went down the stairs where they said “Top of the Rock” here. Confusion ensued, turns out I was supposed to go to the SIDE of the building rather than the front. I finally found Jason and then we got in line using our Citi Pass tickets that were given to us at #TBEX. I absolutely loved the Citi Passes, I was able to visit the Empire State Building, and “Top of the Rock” quicker, without the frustration of ticket lines. We just breezed through the building, got in the elevator and rode to the top of the building. One cool feature I liked was the fact that the top of the elevator was plexiglass, and it showed a video about Rockefeller Center via projector! So as you looked up you saw the video, but it was clear so you could see the elevator shaft heading up to the top of the building. It was nifty, and it certainly beats elevator music. There were several levels, you got to an area with plexiglass as you look out to the city below you. The sun was setting, the neon lights were flashing as you look down and see a sea of taxi cars whiz by. We made through hordes of tourists on the stairs to the second viewing level which I preferred because it was cooler, and there wasn’t the restriction of the plexiglass which allowed you to take pictures of the city with ease. I loved looking straight across the Empire State Building which I was at the night before. Afterwards, we met up with @Solofriendly and walked around the city some more, we even saw the St. Patricks Cathedral which was amazing. A cathedral smack dab in the middle of a concrete jungle is pretty amazing I have to say. We even stopped by a food cart selling Hot Dogs, Kabobs and Pretzels. I opted for the Pretzel, even though it was a bit dry and the fact that I spilled Mustard all over my skirt. Pretty embarrassing but I didn’t mind because I felt like I was with friends that I had known for a long time. Even though we only spoke through twitter, I felt like I had met them before. They even cracked jokes about me spilling the mustard, we all laughed and then we headed our separate ways by the end of the night. If you are not following them on twitter or haven’t checked out their blogs, DO.
By now I have walked a fair amount in the city- wearing flats. I decided to bring a pair of flats, they were the only one I had in my closet and thought they were cute to bring. Oh, how wrong I was to bring them. By the end of the first day, my feet was throbbing,the pain was blinding but I walked through it. At the end of the trip, I wanted to burn those shoes, and never wear them again! I haven’t since then. So the lesson here is that a good pair of shoes is crucial! BRING GOOD SHOES!
I know- No Seinfeld quotes in this article is shocking(for those that know me well), but believe me when I go back to New York city I am checking out the Sites mentioned in the famed TV show- and that includes the diner! Until then “no soup for you!”.. I simply couldn’t resist..
The reason I was in town was for #TBEX, where hundreds of travel bloggers flocked to New York City to meet fellow travel bloggers and to listen to professionals on panels to learn more about how to get the best out of travel blogging. Check out their website Travelblogexchange.com and keep an eye out for my next post which is all about #TBEX and the wonderful people I met there..