Grab a coffee and a comfy seat – this is a long post!
The drive up from AC to New York is a relatively quick drive that is covered in toll booths. We left AC at 11 A.M approximately and drove for about 3 and a half hours to New York State.
We stopped at a Subway for lunch and tried their promotional summer sub, the AppleWood Pulled Pork Sub. It was an amazing meal.
After lunch we drove right to the self catering apartment we were staying at (below somebodies house). We arrived, unpacked the car, got back in the car and explored Staten Island. We drove from the one side to the other side so that the Statue of Liberty was in sight. We also did this to see where the ferry left from and where the train station was.
On our way back to the house we stopped at a K-Mart to do a shop for all the necessities.
Once home we unpacked all the shopping and relaxed for the evening. Later on the owner of the house upstairs, Patricia, came and welcomed us and gave us some advice as well as showed us where the train left from, times of trains etc. There was a nice shortcut through some bush to the Metro – literally a 5 minute walk.
We then watched some T.V before heading off to bed.
This morning was an early start, and we went straight down to the Metro train station. Once there we eagerly awaited our trains arrival. When they say 08h52 then they mean 08h52! Quite amazing! We passed a couple of interesting station names while heading to the ferry port:
Once on the train all that we had to do was wait until the train went all the way to the end which was also the ferry port, about a 15 minute ride. The ferry was really enjoyable as you got to see all of Manhattan from a distance and also a very nice view of the Statue of Liberty.
We arrived at the Manhattan port and went straight to a man to redeem our Bus tour tickets, little did we know he had registered them for the wrong day but anyway they let us on the bus. We went to the bus stop and within minutes we were touring around Manhattan on a guided tour. We drove right underneath the One World Trade Center, which is the new replacement for the World Trade Center building.
We drove past something known as the Manhattan High Line which was the old train track that ran above ground in the city, but is now a garden that spans many blocks. Really great for an urban city and making good use of old equipment.
We drove past all of these incredible buildings, even Buddy from Cake Boss’ shop, not the one from the show but a different one.
We then drove into the middle of Time Square, which was exactly how it is in the movies, flashing lights, thousands of people – all very overwhelming and incredible at the same time.
In New York they have the worlds biggest Macy’s, sadly Mom didn’t want pop in at Macy’s but we still went past it.
We went past the Crocs store which was incredibly full, as there was a celebrity inside apparently – we are unsure of who it was. This is the queue outside the shop:
The next places we went past were Madison Square Garden and the Flat Iron building before passing Wall St. (Sorry about the dude’s head in the pic!)
This bus ride took up a large portion of the day, but it was definitely worth it. For lunch we went around the route again, stopped in Chinatown and walked around to find a restaurant. Found a great spot and the food was amazing and very reasonable.
Now because the world revolves around me, I really wanted to get this pair of shoes that i saw in AC. u=Unfortunately they were really expensive there, but we searched for them again, and found them at a shop right opposite the Empire State Building. Along with the shoes I also bought a couple of pairs of socks.
After the shop we thought we might as well go up the Empire State Building as we were already at the bottom of it.
We got in an elevator that took us 80 floors up. 80 floors! We walked the next 6 floors in order to get to the observation level. The views were incredible, you can see everything up there as you can see in the following photos:
Now we were ready for supper, and we found a deli/sit down restaurant. You picked what you wanted to eat, they heated if necessary and then you sit down and eat. Cameron had sushi, Mom and Dad had chicken and Veg and I had a quesadilla/pita.
We then jumped in a cab and went to the ferry station. The ride home was a lot more spectacular than during the day, the lights on Lady Liberty and the lit up skyline was a sight let me tell you.
Once back on Staten Island we got straight on the train, and went back to our station before going home and getting some much needed sleep. We were exhausted! It was 11pm!
Today we were all excited as we awoke as we were heading to the Yankees Stadium to watch the New York Yankees take on the Cincinnati Reds. It is difficult to describe the atmosphere and what we experienced – all I can say it was really amazing.
To get there was actually pretty easy, we needed to catch the train to the ferry, take the ferry to Manhattan, get on a different Metro train that headed for the Bronx and then stop at the Yankee Stadium Station (yes they have their own station!).
Once there the atmosphere was electric – there were people everywhere in their baseball jerseys. People were selling waters and hot dogs and every type of Yankee apparel available! There were merchandise stores everywhere you looked, and let me tell you the goods weren’t cheap, R1400 for a replica baseball top for example.
We entered the stadium and headed to our seats just in time for the ceremonial first pitch and the National Anthem – spine chilling stuff. We were sitting on the ‘bleachers stand’ in the boiling sun, wearing no hats (except Dad obviously) or sun block. Luckily Dad suggested we buy hats as mementos as well as to save our pretty faces.
The game was intense as the score was even the entire game, but the Yankees pulled through in the end and won it. All in all a good game adn an amazing experience for all of us.
On our way back to the ferry we were ready for some late lunch/ supper. And what better way than to go to an Irish American pub. The wings were probably the nicest I have had in the past 2 months. And Moms coconut shrimp she said were the best she has ever had. ” The batter was light and crispy and the orange marmalade was brilliant” – Elizabeth Pengelly.
After supper we visited the World Trade Center memorials, it was really saddening to see all the names of the lives that were lost and the number of people who lost their lives.
We then walked back to the ferry and headed back to the house. A very eventful day, and we needed some rest. I must add that every day when we came home we all fell asleep as our heads hit the pillow as we were on our feet the entire day.
Today we decided was going to be a lot more relaxed, but obviously it didn’t end up that way. We had decided that we were going to go to Central Park, I mean you can’t go to New York and not go to Central Park. So that’s what we did, we caught the train and then the ferry and then caught the Metro to Central Park.
Central park is so much bigger than i thought it was – I mean we barely scratched the surface and we walked about 10 blocks or so.
We stopped for lunch next to a fountain/body of water where they were using remote controlled sail boats. Boys will be boys so we HAD to rent a yacht and sail it on the pond! It was an amazing experience and a lot of fun.
Once we had done everything we could we walked back to the station, got on a Metro train, and went to the ferry station where Mom and Dad left us to go back to the house by ourselves. It was easy to get back to the house as we had done it like 6 times already. Cam and I were fine by ourselves and we left Mom and Dad to have some quality time without us around.
Mom and Dad visited the shop called Mood which is always in a show called Project Runway – it is where they get their fabrics from. Mom was in her element apparently – like a kid in a candy store!
They found a stall owned by a South African (Nunu – can only be South African!) so they enjoyed a couple of glasses of wine from home!
Mom and Dad returned home later and we all went to bed.
What a hectic four days in New York – tomorrow we are back on the road again!
This photograph below of Mitchie and I is on the Staten Island Ferry. It is particularly significant as it marks a 20 year anniversary of when I was pregnant with him and Russ and I visited New York and Russ took a photograph of me on the very same ferry. Back then I also had a parcel from Macy’s in my hand – so you see Mitch I had already been to the largest Macy’s and finding your shoes was more important this time round. What a wonderful couple of days in NY. Exhausting and exhilarating!