Wednesday, November 24, 2010

NYC: Day 3

Saturday, November 6th

On Saturday morning we had breakfast at the hotel, and then headed to Times Square to board a Grayline "Hop On, Hop Off" bus. We got 48 hour "all loops" pass, which included the Downtown Loop, the Uptown Loop, and the Brooklyn Loop. Our aim was to see the Statue of Liberty and Ground Zero, so we got on the Downtown Loop bus.

We started in Times Square and headed south. We passed Madison Square Garden, Macy's, the Empire State Building, the Flat Iron Building,
Greenwich Village, SoHo, Canal St., Wall St., Ground Zero, and ended at Battery Park. We got off at Battery Park with the intent of getting on the ferry to see the Statue of Liberty, but the line was already hours long, and it was only about 10:30am! We decided that Chad, Mrs. Suzy and I would return Sunday morning to the Statue of Liberty while Mr. David was over on Staten Island waiting to start the marathon.

Battery Park was a bustling little place, and there were tons of food vendors, t-shirt stands, and people dressed as the Statue of Liberty. Chad bought me some roasted cashews and they were out of this world. You can smell the roasted nuts from a mile away, and the scent is pretty much intoxicating.

After leaving Battery Park, we walked north up to Wall St. and Ground Zero. We stopped to see Alexander Hamilton's grave at the beautiful Trinity Church, and then stopped to see the 9/11 memorials at St. Paul's Chapel. This was incredibly moving, and I definitely teared up a little bit. I had to stop reading some of the accounts from 9/11 so that I wouldn't start downright sobbing in the chapel. When you walk out of the back doors of St. Paul's Chapel you are looking straight at Ground Zero. It is almost inconceivable to think that not even a single window was broken during the collapse of the buildings. From their website:

The Little Chapel That Stood

On September 11, 2001, St. Paul’s Chapel escaped destruction when the World Trade Center buildings collapsed across the street. Although the churchyard and church were filled with debris and dust, there was no physical damage to the building.

After looking at Ground Zero, we hopped back on the Grayline bus, headed north and got off at South Street Seaport, aka Pier 17. We were looking for lunch, and ended up eating at Uno's. Ironically, one of our best meals on the trip came from a chain restaurant that serves Chicago style pizza, ha. There was about a 30 minute wait, due mostly to the fact that a kid's birthday party was taking up about half the restaurant. In order to get the bathroom I had to traverse a group of 4 year-olds taking swings at a pinata. Seriously, who brings a pinata to a restaurant? It was interesting to see all of the nannies lined up with strollers, waiting to take the kids home. You don't see that in Central Kentucky!

One kind of funny/kind of sad thing that happened was a guy bent down to pick up a baby and then stood up really fast. The only problem was that he was right under a low-hanging light fixture, so the poor little kid's head crashed right into the light fixture. The only thing that made it kind of funny was that it wasn't the guy's baby - it was his friends. He obviously felt terrible, and the parents were very gracious. It was pretty entertaining to watch all of this going on while we were waiting for our table.

After lunch we got back on the bus and headed back to midtown. We passed the United Nations building, the Trump Towers, the East Village, and Turtle Bay. Once we were back at Rockefeller Center we got off the bus and walked around some more. We stopped at The Christmas Cottage and picked up some ornaments, and then got coffee and desserts at Fluffy's Cafe & Bakery. We thought about going to Magnolia Bakery, but the line was unbelievably long. Fluffy's was pretty good though! I had a red velvet cupcake that was about the size of my head. Chad had a cannoli, Mr. David had cheesecake, and Mrs. Suzy had a black and white cookie.

We headed back to the hotel to rest up a little before dinner. Mr. David wanted to get off his feet and get his gear together for the marathon, and Mrs. Suzy and I wanted to watch Zenyatta in her historic race at the Breeder's Cup. Zenyatta almost had it, but lost by a head.

We ventured back out Saturday night for dinner. Mr. David had one meal in mind - pancakes. He had been eating pasta for lunch and dinner for the past three days and he said he wanted to hurl at the thought of eating another noodle. He normally eats pancakes before his long runs in training, so he felt that would be a good pre-race meal. We walked a few blocks over from the hotel and found the Morning Star cafe, a small diner that served breakfast 24/7.

After dinner, we stopped in at a drugstore so that Mr. David could buy a disposable rain pancho to sit on at the Runner's Village in Staten Island. His start time for the marathon was 10:10am, but they had to be over on Staten Island around 7:30am, so he wanted to make sure he had a warm dry place to sit in case of rain. We could not find rain panchos anywhere (they had been cleaned out of umbrellas and panchos), but Chad, Mrs. Suzy and I did find a Dracula cape that was on clearance from Halloween. We were laughing so hard at the thought of Mr. David carrying a Dracula cape to sit on, but we knew he wouldn't go for it. When we told him about it he actually did consider it for a minute, but then Chad found one pancho stuck behind a display. It worked out for Mr. David, but we would have loved to see him wearing a cape.

Pictures from Saturday:

Battery Park

Roasted cashews are da bomb.

Wall Street subway station

Alexander Hamilton's grave.
(I bet he always wanted to be buried next to a factory shoe outlet.)

Inside St. Paul's Chapel

The back of St. Paul's Chapel,
directly across from Ground Zero

Ground Zero

Me and Chad on the bus

Pier 17

Zarin Fabrics
(sadly, there were no Bobby or Jill sightings)

Cell phone picture of my cupcake at Fluffy's

Pancakes at Morning Star Cafe

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