New York day 2
So the 2nd day came after just a short couple of hours of sleep, well, short, we slept from 20:00 until 06:00 so just perfect amount of sleep and though the night did not go as super as one might have hoped because of the numerous times of waking up at night I do have to say that I woke up as fit as a fiddle, ready to take on the world and New York, nothing could bring me down, or so I thought…
We started the morning with having breakfast at a little buffet kind restaurant. I was not that hungry so my father and I shared a plate and just had a coffee. Just a small side not it was just 08:00 and well, everybody was busy already :), the city was working already very hard.
There is however that I noticed here and that I started to notice in most restaurants, so sit down with me New York and answer me this. On the menu, where you list all the food and drinks and answer me this honestly please… Why do you list all the calories of the food and the drinks but not the prices of the drinks??? So you can rip people of with the prices?
And what is with all the tipping? I know it is a custom but if I tip you less then the expected 18% it means you have done a shitty job because asking every 5 minutes if I want another drink it is not a kind gesture towards me, it means you are annoying me and don’t seem to want to let me enjoy my nice dinner.
Yes, I am on a rant roll now so let me share just the last bad thing of this fantastic day and let me share with you after that the awesome things of this great day because this day was really great, I had a fantastic time in this great city. So we were taking the Grayline Downtown tour, please remember this company and avoid it when you ever come to New York!!! The bus was driving on a steady speed along, the tour guide was great and funny but then we came close to Battery Park and the tour guide told us that there was a defect with the bus’s airconditioning and we had to leave the bus there. A pity of course but Battery Park is where you hop on to the ferry to the Statue of Liberty so we were like “well that is good luck with some bad luck”. So we walked to the water, saw the huge line for the ferry but noticed the Water Taxi for which we had a free ride ticket so we hopped on that one for the tour. Now I will describe what we saw during the tour later, let me first finish my rant ;-). So after the water taxi we decided to go for a small lunch (at Wendy’s Omnomnomnomnomnomnomnom) followed by walking a bit back along Broadway to get back on the Grayline Downtown tour and guess what, “the driver needed to go to his other job at 17:00 (note please that it was just 15:00) and so the bus would no longer drive further then Battery Park!!! We protested of course but alas, we had to get off the bus and get on another. Which meant waiting for almost 20 minutes (30 degrees, hardly any shades, goody). When the next bus came eventually we hopped on and the tour guide from the previous bus joined us upstairs as a “passenger”. He took up a seat of one of the paying passengers and thought that he had just as much rights as the rest and so that meant that one passenger less could enjoy the nice things to see in New York. And just one more complaint, with the evening tour they said that it would not be hop on hop off and that they would make no stops. After just 2 blocks the bus made a stop to pick up more passengers and again claimed that it would make no other stops and guess what, at the Empire State Building it made another stop to let some people get off, claiming it was a courtesy stop but you never know, was just annoying.
So… enough ranting, vacation is about having fun and wow, I have been having a lot of fun :).
As I was saying, after the breakfast we walked towards 48th Street. We picked up our tickets and hopped on the first tour of the day. We decided to go with the downtown tour which took us from Times Square all the way down to the Battery Park. Our tourguide told us about the history of Times Square and he told us a lot about the history about the buildings and the landmarks followed by eventually the “excuse” drop off at the Battery Park. At Battery Park we could really feel the heat. So we started to look for a boat ride towards the Statue Of Liberty. We walked a bit around and saw one of the ferry rides but it had huge lines (waiting seemed to take hours) and a very strict security check. But then we saw the Water Taxi and we knew we had free tickets for that and after looking a bit around we saw that it even had very short lines and though it would not stop at the Statue of Liberty it would pass very close to it and even pause there for picture opportunities.
The tour guide of the water taxi was quite funny and he told some interesting facts about New York (also some mistakes) but all in all it was really nice and yes naturally it was very rehearsed but that is alright, he naturally does it a lot. The tour also took us past Brooklyn (bit like Almere you could almost say, quite a dull town mostly) and it also took us past New Jersey followed by a stop next to the Intrepid Museum which was awesome because I can’t wait until I get to visit that museum. After that stop we sailed a bit more along the shores of Manhattan until it was time to go off board.
After the taxi it was lunch time followed by another bad tour experience. And the tour back to Times Square was sufficient with information but not that great. The guide could have been more interesting so that was a bit of a downside to the adventure that we had there.
At the end of this tour we had a drink on the top floor of the Mariott Hotel on the 48th floor (glass elevator so I just looked to the floor so I would not see that we were rising until we reached our destination (my ears popped a bit but I tried to ignore that very much). The wonderful thing about this top floor was that the seating area was spinning slowly and you would eventually see the entire city around you while you enjoy a nice drink or even enjoy the buffet.
So we had two drinks and then went downstairs for the night tour, know please that it was still 28 degrees ;-). It was really nice to drive around, the tour guide was quite interesting with an AMAZING view from the Manhattan Bridge on the Island and on the Brooklyn Bridge. In case you are wondering why the tour did not drive across the Brooklyn Bridge, that is because that bridge is closed for commercial transportation. So no tours across it.
We got the advice to next time stay in Brooklyn since that would most likely save a lot of money so who knows, if I ever come back I just might listen to the advice since the subway will take us there in an instant and to downtown as well of course.
I have to be honest, once the lights turned on in the city it looked beautiful, my camera can’t do the sight justice but it looks awesome and magical, especially once the Empire State Building turns on.
Once the tour was done it was time to get something to eat and well, we decided to be a bit lazy and went to TGI Friday’s which was a bit difficult due to some wonderful memories which are also a bit painful in a way. But we had a good dinner there and once we were fulfilled it was time to go home and we were very late home actually, around 23:00 which was not ideal because the alarmclock would ring again in the morning at 06:00.
Not much to talk about and more to see I believe. I took around 1700 pictures so I need to sort it out a lot but it will be soon