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Unread 14 Jun 19, 11:57 AM  
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VeryexcitedH
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Join Date: Mar 13
Day 1 Tuesday 23rd October 2018

The others hadnt believed me when, the night before, I had said wed be awake at silly oclock. Sure enough, in our shared room come 4 oclock the lights of mobile phones started to shine bright as each one of us woke up.

We all spent time chilling and catching up on social media and with family at home on our phones before deciding to get up and grab a coffee. A was training for the London Marathon in April so she popped on her running gear and at about 7am headed out of the hotel for a run around central park. I know that initially she headed in the wrong direction so took a bit of a detour around the streets of NYC before getting back on track, finding the park and having a run.

E had a friend from work currently in NYC who was visiting with her grandchildren and had spoken with her via text about getting to the Disney Store so that the children could open. E graciously offered to go and hold her spot for her as the Disney Store was literally on the next block from us. Spoiler Alerther friend got caught on the Good morning show several blocks down and didnt make it to store opening where E was stood waiting for her! Instead E allowed the family behind to open the store up.

Coffees and biscuits were consumed in the room by the remainder of the gang in the room while we spent a leisurely morning getting ready for the day. All reassembled together we left the hotel at 9.06am and had a little wander down Times Square to see what shops were about and to decide what we would do this morning. On the street we got chatting to the guys selling tickets for the Hop on Hop off bus and they offered us a deal. We could have unlimited use of the main Hop On Hop Off buses as well as buses that went across to Brooklyn and another couple (the details of which I cant remember as we didnt use them!) The guy also said that we could use the ticket for a water taxi on the River Hudson to see the Statue of Liberty and they would be valid until our last day. He gave us a price and we each bought the deal. No recollection of what the actual price was but it seemed to be good so we snapped it up!

Tickets in hand we followed his directions to where the bus would pick us up and decided that we would take the bus down to the ferry terminal. We got on the bus at around 9:45.

On our travels we saw Radio City,


the M&Ms Store,


our hotel Double Tree Suites by Hilton on Times Square,


the Hard Rock Caf,




Madison Square Garden,


Macys,


ESB


and The Flat Iron building.



Whilst we were on the bus I read on the tickets that in order to use the ferry we must book only using the ticket code so I logged in and did this for each of us. I recall booking tickets for about 1.00pm and we had to be there half an hour before.

Whilst we all thoroughly enjoyed the HOHO bus as it gave us a great overview of the city and we saw some fantastic sights we found it incredibly slow as traffic was so busy. We realised that if we allowed the bus to continue we would probably miss our slot to board the ferry but looking at the map we could jump out at the next stop and walk there with plenty of time to spare. We got off the bus at 11:50 and followed google to direct us to where the ferry left from Brookfield Place/Battery Park City.

We had a wander around the area and realised that we hadnt yet had any breakfast (this was to become a running theme of the trip we were so busy sightseeing we forgot to eat and drink!)
As we were early enough we found a little caf called The Laughing Man Co where we each ordered a coffee of some description and a pastry/bagel. I paid $10.55. Rested and tummies full we headed towards the ferry terminal where we used the restroom before getting into line for the next ferry.

As we headed on I suggested to the others that rather than sit inside behind the windows we stand at the back of the ferry with a view to heading to the right hand side once they open the ropes. We did stand at the back and once we had left the port at 1:16 the guys moved the rope blocking off the side of the ferry. We scuttled down the right hand side and managed to secure a prime position for seeing the SOL.





We all thoroughly enjoyed this and spent the time taking photos of the sights, the SOL and each other. As we approached the SOL the guide told us that the ship we could see in the far distance was a Royal Navy ship, for the life of me I cant remember its name.





As a side note, the guide on the ferry was fantastic! He was easy to listen to and was very informative about the sights of NY. We were on the ferry for well over an hour and he earned his tip as we left. We disembarked (getting ready for my cruise in August by using the correct lingo!) the ferry at 2:25pm and headed out of Battery Park.

First stop was the North and South pool of the World Trade Centres.





This was an amazingly sombre experience. I couldnt quite believe how, despite there being hundreds of people there, the whole area was so quiet, calm and serene. I will admit to shedding a tear behind my sunglasses as E pointed out a Firefighter who had a prayer card standing up in his name. DH is a firefighter and absolutely loves his job. I couldnt imagine him going out to work one day and never coming home again and the thought that so many of the names listed had left their loved ones never to return made me sad. They were absolute heroes, every single one of the names listed.

Afterwards we wandered across the road into Liberty Park to look at the Sphere (which we later discovered from our time in the 9/11 museum had actually stood outside the World Trade Centres before 9/11 and had been salvaged from the wreckage.)



We also looked at the Horse Soldier Sculpture which depicted the film 12 Strong that B had watched on the way out!



Once finished here we took a short stroll past the 9/11 museum and headed into the Oculus and the Westfield Shopping Centre.








It was about 3:47 by now and we hadnt eaten a proper meal yet! As DH works in NYC quite a bit and had recommended a place inside the Westfield to eat so we decided thats where we would head. We browsed the shops on the ground floor and then set about finding our destination. We were headed to Eataly. But could we find it? NO! That place is massive! We went upstairs, downstairs, out towards the train station and beyond then back again. My goodness it was tricky to navigate. There were so many shops!

No idea how we did it but we eventually managed to find our destination. Thank goodness as I know that I was exhausted, thirsty and starving. Eataly is Bread-themed branch of the famed Italian market, offering counters, restaurants & cooking demos. There were several restaurants within it that we could eat at and we chose the first one we stumbled on.

However, we didnt know that there was more than one place to eat so, despite there being a wait, we put our names down for a table and asked for some tap water to refresh ourselves. Once wed had a drink we all wandered around the market and this was when we found the other restaurants, which were not at all busy and could seat us immediately. We eventually gathered back together at the first restaurant and had a chat, realising we could ditch this reservation and eat further in. We politely said wed changed our mind and walked back through the markets to an emptier restaurant that we fancied called La Pizza & La Pasta. We asked for a table and were seated almost immediately with a view of the One World Trade Centre.

We ordered a bottle of wine for myself, A, B, and H and I imagine E ordered a soft drink. We a shared garlic bread and I had Tagliatelle con Rag di Manzo housemade tagliatelle with BRISKET rag, PARSLEY, and parmigiano reggiano.



The pasta cost $23 and it was absolutely divine! After we had that we asked the waiter if we could try cannolis, he brought us a selection from the ones on offer and unfortunately none of us were really taken with them.



My share of the bill was $52.50.

Once we had finished dinner we finished browsing the markets and used the restrooms. On the way down the elevator I went to one of the pastry stalls and bought some fruit filled pastries for us all to to have for breakfast in the morning and we left the Westfield Centre at 6:35pm.

We decided to go to the One World Observatory as E had had a recommendation to do it saying that it was phenomenal. We headed round to the entrance and queued up for our tickets which cost $35. With tickets in hand we followed the line through to security before being allowed in. I wont give anything away but the experience in the lift is amazing, I was just gutted not to have caught it on my phone to look back on. Once out of the lift we walked to the end of the corridor where we waited as instructed. Information was displayed on the wall in front of us about the construction of the One World Observatory and I wont give anything away but once it had finishedWOW! Everyone in the room let out an audible gasp and it was phenomenal.

Once this was complete we were let through the doors where the staff upsold the IPad viewers to everyone. This was $5 to use and they said that by using the Ipad viewer you could name the buildings as you saw them. H picked one up for us and we went off to explore. It was great up here and we spent well over an hour looking outside, watching the exhibits on the TV and exploring. It was dark when we went up so the city was beautifully lit up. We did struggle with the Ipad to locate exactly where we were (due to it being dark) so not sure I would bother again/recommend.





Leaving the One World Observatory we decided we were in need of a drink and took heed of As DH again and headed towards a pub hed suggested. Following google maps to navigate our way there we walked through Wall Street.



We arrived at the Dead Rabbit and went in but it was tiny. We didnt realise that there was an upstairs to it or else we would have gone up there for a drink. Instead we went to the pub next door and had a drink in there.

Hs work colleague had suggested a place called Caf Wha where there was a band playing live music and you could drink. Eat and dance so that was where we were headed next. We used the Uber app on my phone and booked an uber. The uber arrived at 9:28 and only took 11 minutes to take us across the city to the Greenwich Village neighbourhood, arriving at 9:39. I am going to admit I was a little dubious about going in to this place as when we arrived I had to check my pastries in to the cloakroom! Lol! We each paid an entrance fee which was about $10 each and were taken to a booth where the waitress took our drinks orders.

Despite my initial dubious reaction this place was amazing! We all absolutely loved it! E spent a portion of the night sat down due to her current broken toe but the rest of us were up and dancing in the tiny space between the booths. The band were fantastic and really kept the crown going and the waitress certainly kept us topped up with drinks. I also think someone ordered some fries and other food at one point but I have no recollection on who that was or exactly what was ordered!



Oh my goodness we stayed there until 2am! I honestly couldnt believe it. We paid our bill. And I recall the waitress (again) not being overly happy with our tip but I am saying wed had a really long day (22 hours up by the time we left!) and we were, shall we say rather merry?!

As we were leaving I was messaging my DH as he was just getting up and going to work for the day back at home. We decided we were hungry and headed to a really random pizza shop where I know I bought a pizza and only ate a little bit of because it was dire! I whipped out the uber app and ordered another uber to take us home. This time I told the girls not to pay me as it was using all their change and we decided Id order and pay for all ubers and wed sort the money when we got home and I got my credit card bill.

The uber arrived promptly and took us back to Times square but not to our hotel. Who knew there was more than one Double tree up there?! In my drunken state Id ordered it to the wrong one! Oops! But the driver was fab and asked where we actually were staying and took us to the correct one. It was 2:18 when we were back in the lift having a 2am selfie in the mirror!

Make up off and straight to sleep!

Distance covered:

Edited at 01:37 PM.
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Unread 14 Jun 19, 10:31 PM  
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disney owl
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Unread Yesterday, 09:22 PM  
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VeryexcitedH
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Originally Posted by disney owl View Post
busy 1st day
Thanks for reading and commenting. Writing the report made me realise what a crazy first day we'd had and how we simply forgot to eat we were so busy.
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