New York, New York!
To celebrate my mom's 60th birthday (which is actually in June) my mom, my sister, her daughter, and I went to New York City. I have never been before, but I absolutely LOVE seeing new places and I've wanted to go to New York for a long time. It was amazing.
We took the red eye from Salt Lake City and arrived the next morning before 6:00 am.
We caught a cab from the airport to our hotel. It was neither a yellow cab, or an I.D.-ed driver. Scary! I immediately opened up my maps application on my phone and narrated to the others in the car about each road and turn. I wanted the driver to know I knew where we should be headed in case he decided to take us somewhere sketchy...
We dropped our bags off at our hotel and walked around Times Square near our hotel. Then, we took a bus tour of Manhattan. We stopped near Ground Zero, saw the Brooklyn Bridge, Chinatown, Little Italy, the United Nations, and a ton of other sights in lower and mid-town Manhattan. We ate lunch at Carnegie Deli, and I just have to say that deli means something entirely different than what I'm used to! It was scrumptious. We then took another bus tour of upper-Manhattan. I loved seeing the LDS temple there right in the hustle of New York City. It was gorgeous. We saw Lincoln Center, Juliard, Central Park, a ton of museums, plus countless shopping and apartment buildings, and ornate churches. That night, we took a night tour on the bus that took us into Brooklyn where we could look across the river and see all of Manhattan lit up.
Day 2: We started the day by taking the subway to Grand Central Station. This was probably one of my favorite places. I loved how old it is and all the detail that went in to the workmanship. It was absolutely breathtaking. We stopped at the Magnolia Bakery in the lower level of the Station. Yummy!! Then, we hit the American Girl Store (Gwen's request) and walked along Madison Avenue. We then went to get a closer look at the Manhattan temple and on to Central Park. We took a pedi-cab ride around the park which was great. We walked a little around the upper-East side at that point. It was fun seeing the high-end shopping and living areas. For dinner, we ate at the Marriott hotel that has a revolving restaurant on one of its upper levels. We tried to go to the Empire State Building, but the wait was too long that night. Instead, we went shopping at the Macy's store on 34th street. The wooden escalators were my favorite. I even splurged a little that night and bought myself some cute black and white shoes and a top.
Day 3: We woke up at 5 am to stand outside the Today show. We only had to walk 4 blocks from our hotel to Rockefeller Plaza. There was also another Magnolia Bakery that was calling our names that morning! Afterwards, we went on a ferry to see the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. The history in New York was so fun to see. I love a good back-story. We got to see SoHo, Chinatown, and Little Italy up close that afternoon. One of the big events of the trip was that night. We went to see Mama Mia on Broadway. It is in the Winter Garden Theater, which is the same theater that Cats was in for nearly 20 years. It was hands-down the best live performance I've seen. I loved that I could sing along with the songs too.
Day 4: Last Day... This was the first time it was rainy the whole time we were there. It was also our last chance to use the Empire State Building tickets we had pre-purchased. As were were waiting in line, the employees warned us that there was zero visibility up there. They were right. So, we took the map we were given and pretended that we could see everything. All we really saw was fog, literally. We then went to Washinton Square Park in Greenwich Village. It is right there in the heart of NYU also. The arch at the park was built in honor of the 100th anniversary of George Washington's inauguration. I fell in love with Greenwich Village. It is where I decided I would live if I lived in NYC. It was then time for me to pack up. I left a couple hours before everyone else, so I rode the subway all by myself out to Queens and took an Airtram to the airport. I was so proud of myself!
I want to go back to New York with Dennis someday. I thought it was amazing and I loved seeing so many places I've heard about or seen on TV and movies. There is so much more to see that I just have to go again. It's as simple as that.