Tuesday, September 25, 2012

NYC -- The Prelude

Manhattan from the Brooklyn Bridge.

  New York City is one of the few cities in the world that intimidated me. Without ever having visited, just the thought of NYC, while exciting me, also had me a little concerned

  And I've done my fair share of traveling.

  I've been all over Europe as a solo traveler (for the most part), and never thought twice about it. But just thinking about exploring the streets of NYC, made me a little uncomfortable.

  Before I got there, that is.

The Big Bad City
West Side -- Hoboken behind.
  Many times, that's the way it's portrayed in movies -- as the big, bad city-- isn't it? And all the things you hear or read about NYC aren't exactly favorable, are they? Once I got my feet wet, and learned the lay of the land (which didn't take long), I was comfortable. Those feelings of intimidation were ill-found. Maybe that was naive of me, but I felt 100% at ease in my surroundings.

  As a West-Coaster, NYC is a tough place to get to. And as someone who frequently is on trans-continental flights, once you reach your destination, you hardly want to jump on another plane going halfway back in the wrong direction. So other than a quick layover in the airport, I had never set foot on New York ground.

  I knew I would get there sooner or later.

  New York has too many things to offer for me not to see them. And I have friends in the area. So it was only a matter of time.

East Side run. Under the Williamsburg Bridge.
Holiday Fairy Tale
  Whenever I pictured myself visiting New York, it was always during the Holiday season. I don't know, there's something about the mystique of the lights, the cold, crisp air, and the holiday spirit that made me want to experience the Big Apple around New Year's. Maybe that's a fairy tale due to the scenes and images we get in the media so frequently, but that's the idea I had in my head.

  But the timing has never been right. December isn't exactly the time of year that allows me to take a vacation for travel.

  From the time I was a kid, the Holiday Season was smack-dab in the middle of my basketball season. So I will have to wait until my playing days are over to see whether NYC under the holiday lights can live up to the hype.

Statue of Liberty tour.
  Lucky for me though, I had an opportunity to visit the Big Apple this August. The proverbial kill two birds with one stone scenario had arisen (or in this case, three or four birds): visit New York City, meet and visit with friends, and attend a charity event (to be blogged about soon!).

  I had a fabulous time, and thoroughly enjoyed every bit of what NYC had to offer for five days.

  Needless to say, there were friends I didn't get to see, sights I didn't get to visit, and experiences I didn't get to have, so a return trip to NYC is in order. Hopefully sooner rather than later!

  Next time around, I'll blog about the day-to-day things I observed about New Yorkers, and living in the busy city!

A few teasers...

Times Square.
Yankee Stadium!
Central Park.
Grimaldi's Pizza in Brooklyn.
The High Line.
The BIG Piano.
Lexington Ave. Market.


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