USA

G is for Greenwich Village in the A-Z Blogging Challenge

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MY NEW YORK ADVENTURE A-Z BLOGGING CHALLENGE

One way to sit back and relax during a visit to NYC is to visit Greenwich Village. The Village  is a largely residential neighborhood on the west side of Lower Manhattan  and  a large majority of the district is home to upper middle class families.

This was on my list of places to visit for two reasons, well two very popular television shows which I’m a fan of – Friends and Sex and the City.

Naively we asked some of the locals where Central Perk was located to have our dreams crushed when we were informed that the show was actually filmed in Los Angeles and only the outdoor images were shot in New York. Gutted.

We were reliably informed that the building in the exterior shot of Rachael, Monica, Chandler and Joey’s apartment building is at the corner of Grove and Bedford Streets in the West Village. To be honest the buidings in this area all looked alike.

We then went on the hunt for Carrie Bradshaw’s apartment in Sex and the City.

One of my friends who lived in NYC gave me the actual address of where I could find the front of her apartment, so the maps came out and off we went looking.IMG_4897

It was during this hunt that we realised at times how childish we were as we couldn’t wait to show our son the street sign for Gay Street – I know I know pathetic and childish. But we were also equally amused by a sign which stated “No unnecessary noise” which really tickled us. I mean really, do people need to be told that? I guess so.IMG_4895

Whilst in Greenwich Village we had lunch at an Italian restaurant. A bit on the pricey side but  I experienced a delicious tomato gnocchi and Italian bread.

At this point in our adventure we were on day four in NYC and my son’s legs were being worn to the bone. We had walked A LOT every day, and at this point was the only time in the three weeks that we were away that he moaned a little. We managed to reward him with cupcakes and painkillers (always a winning bribe).

From being a massive fan of Sex and the City from season one onwards, I was delighted to reach the steps of 66 Perry Street which was the home to the delightful Carrie Bradshaw for all of those years.

Actually I was always a Miranda fan, couldn’t stand Carrie but I still took great delight in being photographed on the steps to her apartment. Visions of Mr Big pulling up in his limo, autumn leaves and the excitement of this beautiful city took me away briefly from my British life three and a half thousand miles away.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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F is for FAO Schwarz & Flatiron

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MY NEW YORK ADVENTURE A-Z BLOGGING CHALLENGE

FAO Schwarz is probably the best toy store that I have ever set foot in. In fact so much so that I do believe that we ended up going in there three times whilst we visited the Big Apple last summer.IMG_4752

My son who was twelve at the time thought he had died and gone to toy heaven when we walked through those doors. We made sure that he scaled every nook and cranny and saw every toy that was on offer in there.

For me, I just wanted to dance on the Big piano. For any of you who are not familiar with the movie Big starring Tom Hanks, well that film is set around FAO Schwarz and there is a scene where Tom Hanks plays the piano by jumping from key to key.

Even though my son hadn’t seen Big, I told him that he had to join in with me in jumping onto the keys and when we got back home to Manchester I would ensure that he saw the movie. Which he did, and think he was pretty pleased that he’d done that.

No trip to NYC with kids could go without a few hours spent in this fantastic toy shop. We had a blast trying on the various masks, and taking silly photographs with giants lego pieces.

The other F for this blog post is for the Flatiron Building. It’s the most extraordinary building to view as it is very tall, but also really thin. It looks quite odd in fact.

The first time we viewed it was from the Empire State Building, so we decided to visit it properly at a later date where we could take a couple of photographs. Mainly the geeks in us knew it from the Spider man films, but anyway it was worth a snap.

 

 

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E is for Empire State Building

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MY NEW YORK ADVENTURE A-Z BLOGGING CHALLENGE

One of the most famous images in the New York City skyline is that of the Empire State Building and of course I wasn’t going to visit the great city without a trip up to the top of the building to view the spectacular views.IMG_5015

The state of New York is nicknamed the “Empire State” which is where the building got its name from.

One thing to note when you stand out like a tourist in the area of the building which sits between 350 Fifth Avenue, between 33rd and 34th Streets, is firstly don’t stand out like a tourist.

We did and ended up buying tickets from a vendor who promised us an avoid the crowds ticket, plus and this is the main thing, a trip to the Statue of Liberty. We snapped these up as we were still to do the boat trip to Liberty Island. Our nice young vendor informed us that the boat would stop and allow us to walk around Lady Liberty ( no it didn’t – it drove straight past it) – Oh darn!

We did however get a fast pass entrance to the lifts and scaled the eighty floors up to the viewing platform.

I could have stayed there all afternoon as the views from the platform were immense. It literally took my breath away as having a great view of all of the buildings in the same visual picture.

The building has played a part in  so many famous films. Not only does it feature greatly in King Kong, Sleepless in Seattle and Elf but also in The Amazing Spiderman, Shaft, Friends with Benefits and Percy Jackson to name but a few.

 

 

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B is for Bagels, Blisters and Brooklyn Bridge

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MY NEW YORK ADVENTURE A-Z

One of the best things about New York is the bagels that are on sale at most street vendors that are scattered around on most corners within the city.photo

Prior to visiting last summer, I had never ate a bagel…..ever.

On my third day there I visited a typical New York diner and ordered yourself a bagel with cream cheese and grape flavoured jam. Wow, I had died and gone to bagel heaven. Anybody visiting NYC has to experience the New York bagel, and I guarantee that you’ll never east anything that comes to close to it once you leave the city. The Tesco “New York Bagels” failed in comparison.

Spending five days sightseeing each day with a 6:00am start and finishing some fifteen hours later meant that I was not prepared for the blisters that surfaced after the first day.

I cannot stress the importance to anybody reading this who will be visiting NYC for the first time to make sure that you invest in some decent footwear.

I ended up with my feet in bits, and purchasing expensive trainers at the Nike shop not minding how much I paid to feel like I was walking on air, instead of hard concrete. One thing you can guarantee when visiting the Big Apple is that you will walk……a lot. Look after your feet and bring comfortable trainers with you, or be prepared to buy some when you are there like I did. The price of them wasn’t too bad and the staff at the Nike shop were ever so friendly, and very knowledgable about their products.

Finally, a must do when visiting the city that never sleeps is to walk across the Brooklyn Bridge.

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We got the subway into Brooklyn and therefore walked across it from Brooklyn into Manhattan. I was advised by a friend who had lived in NYC that this was the best way to view the city. Boy was she right!  IMG_4861

 

 

The Bridge connects two great New York City boroughs: Manhattan and Brooklyn.

Whether you walk it, bike it, drive across it or like me just admire it at a very slow pace. One things for sure, the Brooklyn Bridge soaring over the East River is one of New York City’s most famous routes, both for tourists and New Yorkers.

 

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