Concrete Jungles – New York City 2011

In recent years, it seems like we have been crossing stuff off my mother’s bucket list. Not that my mother has actually written down a list of things that she would like to do before she dies, but there is most certainly a mental list of things that she has always wanted to do. Now that she has the means, she drags us on family vacations all the time. I love my family. The vacations are great when we are not at each other’s throats. Anyway, last year we went on about four vacations including Virginia Beach and Niagra Falls. This year we visited Disney for about the fifth time and New York City.

My mother raves about NYC. She watches anything that mentions the city and her favorite movie is Maid in Manhattan. This was another dream for her so I was happy to drive the ten hours to NYC for her.

When we first drove into the city!!!

We left South Carolina at midnight and reached NYC at about 10 am. It was incredible to finally be in the city. Even after a minor fender bender with a taxi van (he drove off!), we still were amazed. There are no buildings near this tall in South Carolina. Also, there it was such a very closed in space! South Carolina is nothing but space so this was a new experience. I was the driver for the most part. It was frustrating and intense. New York driving is certainly something different. They. Don’t. Use. Signals! Except for the fender bender, we did not get (or see) any accidents.

I loved all the giant advertisements

We actually stayed in New Jersey because it was cheaper. Commuting to the city SUCKS, but my parents would not stay in the city. Our hotel was fabulous though. Loved it.

our hotel room. and daddy! those beds…so comfortable!

The only thing we did on Friday was go to Times Square! It was so fantastic…I want to live there….

There were so many people in the City which fascinated me. I’m a small town girl and have never visited a city that was this busy, this crowded, this intense. L.A. really did not compare. In Times Square we basically shopped a little bit. I had the opportunity to finally go to Midtown Comics. My friend Sunny met me in Times Square so that was fun since it was our first time meeting in person.

@buterflysamurai and @ alpha6UFS

Here…have more Times Square pictures:

On Saturday we decided to take a double decker bus tour. I really did not want to do this, but, after actually doing it, I highly recommend it to first time NYC visitors! We would not have been able to see NYC like we were able to with this tour. We chose the Gray Line: New York Sightseeing tours, which were the red buses. We did an All Loops, Hop On/Hop Off tour which allowed us to actually get off the bus and see parts of the City [although we only got off about once at Central Park] This tour was great. The tour guides were very informative. The first guide we had was great and I even got him on video. The second was a bit lazier in his approach – he sat down the entire time – but was the most informative. Our last guide was hilarious. We basically saw all of Manhattan and most of Brooklyn. My mother was terrified of going over the Brooklyn bridge on this open top bus and, quite frankly, I was too!

Central Park seemed awesome. We did not get to explore all that we wanted too, but from what we saw was great. We walked into the MET, but did not really look around much. I felt out of place like everyone knew I was a tourist. That was probably because I was pointing and my mouth was gaped open. The worse part was when my sister got a little upset at these kids crawling over the Alice in Wonderland statue. And the bathrooms. The bathrooms in Central Park were gross. When I say gross, I mean REALLY REALLY GROSS. I do not want to even describe what I saw in there.

I really wanted to get out in Harlem, but we did not. Here’s the Apollo though! Harlem was where my people were. Cause I’m, ya know, black.

Central Park map

My sister and I ❤

My sister and my mommy. See all the people climbing on the statue? THIS is what ruined this portion of the day because my sister is a princess and is entitled to what she wants. And what she wanted was a picture with no random people climbing. Guess they do not acknowledge princesses in the city.


China Town

I thought I would not like NYC, but I fell in LOVE. It truly is a great place. Very different from South Carolina and every other place I have visited. My mother is trying to plan a trip back to NYC in November so I hope that all works out because I would love to do more in the city that we did not get an opportunity to do this time. If possible, I would love to move to NYC. All our tour guides basically scared us from doing that by telling us the cost of living.

“One belongs to New York instantly, one belongs to it as much in five minutes as in five years” – Thomas Wolfe


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