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I am leaving today
I want to be a part of it
New York, New York
WE WERE five weeks into a whirlwind US trip and what better way to finish than in the Big Apple.
Our New York City adventure was complete – from staying in a brownstone apartment, catching the subway and eating $1 slices of pizza and enjoying the Melbourne-like weather for just under two weeks.
Our first day was full of excitement.
My boyfriend Dylan and I stuffed our backpacks, slipped into those awfully sensible walking shoes and headed for the closest subway station en route to Central Park.
Which is big, bigger than you would think – much bigger.
Although beautiful and well-maintained even in the heat of summer, my enthusiasm quickly dropped after a few kilometres when my newly purchased (not such a sensible option) Nike’s began to rip at the skin on my heel.
Blisters are not ideal at the best of times but when you are exploring one of the largest man-made urban parks in the world let’s just say I wasn’t my chipper, bubbly self.
Back down into the smelly, sweaty subway station we went and straight to Times Square.
These little town blues
Are melting away
I’ll make a brand new start of it
In old New York
Frank got me through the pain and the blues sure did melt away when we rose from the concrete and saw the bright lights of Times Square.
Never did I expect it to be so hot and dirty but that didn’t dampen our spirits because we weren’t the only ones.
Selfie sticks were in abundance.
As were the matching I Love NYC T-shirts, backpacks and, of course, sensible shoes.
We were back with our own kind – tourists.
Combine the slow walking tourists with their heads in the sky, with jackhammers drilling into the cement, a sea of yellow taxis and 100 per cent humidity our senses were sent into hyper-drive.
Dodging the creepy people in costumes (which included an Elmo walking around without his head on) and the people trying to sell us Broadway tickets we got sucked in by a guy with comedy tickets.
Flustered by the heat and obviously not locals he pounced on us.
It was only $30 each and included two drinks.
How could we say no?
I think we just agreed to get away from the pestering salesman.
Instantly regretting our decision, we were certain it was a scam.
After a big day and the pain of my blisters again becoming apparent we headed back home.
The next day I opted for thongs as we headed up the Empire State Building.
Tip one: If you don’t like queuing in lines, NYC may not be for you as it took us nearly two hours to get to the top.
I am not the biggest fan of heights, so when I could feel the building move when we were only on the 32nd floor I wasn’t sure we made the greatest decision.
Dylan being the carefree (sometimes stupid) male he is he assured me it would be fine.
Up we went.
Once at the top it was fairly incredible (and it was a great decision).
When they call it the concrete jungle they aren’t kidding.
I want to wake up in a city
That doesn’t sleep
And find I’m king of the hill
Top of the heap
Frank again helped me through my fears as Dylan stuck the GoPro through the safety bars, which are clearly there to keep you in, to get that perfect photo (idiot).
I’m sure if he wasn’t sick of me singing repetitively he would have crowned himself king of something.
Back home we went before tentatively committing to following through with out comedy tickets that night.
If alarm bells weren’t already ringing with the dodgy tickets from the chatty salesman, the skinny alley way and two sets of stairs we had to endure before finding the bar definitely set them off.
The pure relief we felt when the tickets were legit and bar was already full with other unaware tourists is something we will probably never feel again.
The drinks were delicious and the comedy had me in stitches – 30 US dollars well spent.
Tip two: The view is better from the top of the Rockefeller Centre.
‘The top of the rock’ as it is known, has by-far the best view of Central Park and to Dylan’s delight had lower safety fences which you could reach out further (again risking the life of our GoPro).
We spent 12 days enjoying (and sometimes complaining about) New York’s summer weather, which had hints of Melbourne-like downpours, but if I told you everything we did it would cover the whole paper.
So here is a little slice of everything else.
Wine out of a coffee cup when we saw Chicago on Broadway, a food truck market which had the best burritos, Statue of Liberty and M&M’s World and a bag full of every colour imaginable.
There was Wall St, the Natural History Museum, more Central Park adventures (with fewer blisters), the Brooklyn Bridge and waiting an hour for a slice of ‘the best pizza in NYC’.
Tip three: it wasn’t worth the wait and our $1 slices of pizza from Two Bro’s Pizza were equally as good.
I could go on but instead I think I will leave you with this:
And if I can make it there
I’m gonna make it anywhere
It’s up to you
New York, New York, New York