Saturday, 17 January 2009

new york new york

21/12/08
hi everyone yes i have been neglecting you again but to be fair I'm not the only slack one Scott and I were both very disappointed with the lack of comments after my novel of an entry about Vegas!!!

Anyway back to today we are currently sitting on the floor outside Gate 73 at Vancouver International airport waiting to board. The flight is a Cathay flight from Hong Kong to new york with a stop in van so all the people who were already on the plane are in side the gate and us newbies are locked out side and there aren't enough chairs. There is also meant to be free internet in here but it's not working.

As you may have heard the weather has been a little brutal here lately there has been a lot of snow and I don't remember the last time the temperature got above 0. Now vancouver doesn't normally get weather this cold and isn't use to the amount of snow we have had. on the plus side it hasn't rained in ages and the snow is so pretty. So even though our flight wasn't scheduled to leave till 9.45pm we left our place at 4.30pm because we thought it might have been a slow trip out to the airport, however cos there is so much snow there aren't many people on the road so it took about the same time normal. The taxi driver moved into the lane by the curb with more snow in it for some reason and nearly lost it we came very close to being wrapped around a power pole, but he regained control and thankfully moved back into the centre lane.

We sat down the wrong end of the airport for a while as we are going to the states we went down the end that said US departures, but our flight didn't come up on the board then we realised the flight was following on from somewhere else and found we had to check in at the international end. We were still miles early and the queue wasn't too bad. Then we went through, i bleeped going through the metal detector big surprise forgot to take off my giant metal Dolce and Gabana belt didn't I! Scott bleeped too for a change he had forgotten to take his phone out of his pocket. We had some tea and now here we are getting numb bums sitting on the floor.

Several weeks later when I had some time off:
We finally got on the plane about the time our flight was scheduled to leave which wasn't too bad considering all flights had been delayed and some even cancelled. However we then sat on the tarmac in the plane for over 2 hours while they plowed the runway and de-iced the plane. They gave us our meals and turned the tv screens on for us while we waited. They had an option on the tv menu called outside camera which was pretty cool, the camera was mounted on the belly of the plane and we could see all the runway guys running around and stuff it was quite neat i saw the wheel fold up once we were finally in the air. Considering the weather i thought we might have been in for a bumpy trip but it was fine. We arrived in New York there was snow on the ground but the runway was a lot clearer than the one in vancouver.

The photo is of the wing of our plane before we were de-iced there was about a foot of snow on the ground and yes thats an Air NZ plane next to us.

Day one

When we got to the hotel we were too early to check in but the people had checked out of our room but it hadn't been cleaned yet but they let us put our stuff in the room which was great. The hotel was in a great location close to everything. We wandered around 5th ave and the rest of mid town. It was so cold it stung your legs through your pants (about -19). The photo was taken at a random place we found on the way back to the hotel.

American natural history museum

This is the museum in the movie Night at the museum. So we spent the whole time going "that was in the movie so was that". The highlights were the planetarium show and of course all the dinosaur bones.

The centre of it all

To get to The American Natural History Museum we decided to get the subway up one side of the park and walk across the park. It was gorgeous. It was quite slippery and not very well signposted but we made it across. There were heaps of squirrels too they were really tame they looked funny frolicking in the snow.

oh and we remembered to take puki with us

Wall st

We had to go and check out Wall st and the NY Stock Exchange. You hear so much about Wall st you expect it to be a main thoroughfare, but no it's this tiny alleyway of a street and most of it is pedestrian only. We were so surprised. the photo is the front of the stock exchange.

Christmas everywhere

All the shops down 5th Avenue and just everywhere really, had really got into the Christmas spirit in a big way oh and Hannukah too. It was incredible the cost involved must have been huge. All the little trees down the side of park ave were strung with lights, some trees in central park were lit up and they had a big jewish candlelabra there too. The most amazing of course were the really expensive high end stores, Cartier see the photo, Saks had giant snowflake lights on the facade of the building that flashed in timer to music, Tiffanys was a corner building and they had decorated it to look like a giant present the ribbon was all red lights. Everywhere was so beautiful and the first few days we were there there was snow on the ground so it was really magical like christmas in movies.

christmas everywhere 2

You couldn't go to new York at Christmas time and not check out the massive lit up tree at the Rockefeller centre. It was huge. We got a couple to take a photo of us in front of it but unfortunately I have my eyes shut and look like i'm on drugs so I haven't put that one on the blog.

I was hoping to go ice skating here I thought that would be really magical, but there were literally hundreds of people standing around watching the skaters and we didn't want o look silly so gave it a miss.

Christmas everywhere 3

We found this fountain walking home one night and thought it looked cool. they had different shaped giant baubles down the other end. For some reason there were a whole bunch of people in muppet costumes (eg elmo) around here I think they might have been collecting for something either that or it was a flash mob.

Also it is very hard to keep your hair looking semi decent when it's that cold and you keep taking hats and scarves on and off, it was also quite windy alot of the time. So yeah I think my hair is a mess in every photo we took, major hat hair in this one but the baubles were so pretty.

the statue of liberty is a @#$^&

As you can't actually climb right up to the flame anymore we didn't go up into the statue. It was ridiculous you had to go through security before getting on the ferry which was fine but all the poor people who decided to go into the statue and museum, had to line up in the cold and go through security again! Um the only way to get to the island is by the ferry, where are you meant to get bombs or weapons from in the walk from the dock to the statue?!!!

I have decided that The statue of liberty is a #$@&* because I think she was the one that pushed me over. I was stepping up onto a wide concrete step to have my photo taken in front of the statue and my foot slipped woops I was pushed and fell shin first into the concrete step. I got a huge nasty bruise instantly which is still there 2 weeks on it doesn't help that i keep hitting it but thats another story.

Oh and no the photo is not photoshopped.

Liberty island guess who lives here

Again thanks to the Citypass we were able to jump the queue to get on the ferry to Liberty island. The ferry only had so many chairs inside and we missed out on them but we got a lovely view of the city and the harbour outside in the cold. In alot of the other photos taken here my face is hidden behind my scarf but you can tell from my eyes i'm still smiling. Note the line of grey smog hovering over the city.

Empire State Building

We decided to go and see the Empire State building on Xmas day as it was open and we thought it might not be so busy. haha yeah right! We initially tried to go in the morning but the queue was huge so we decided to go to China town instead. I got a beautiful scarf for $6 sadly one of only a few purchases all week (not through lack of trying). So we went back about 4.30ish and the line was a lot shorter and moving quite well. This was just the line to get into the building, once inside you had to line up again for security (like at the airport) then line up for tickets we had our citypass so got to skip that bit, then you had to line up for the elevator to the 80th floor, then line up for the elevators again to go up the final 6 floors! We didn't take the last elevator we took the stairs instead and saved about 30-45 minutes. So when we got to the observation deck it was dark and the city was aglow with lights it was beautiful, definitely the best time of day to come.

Empire state 2

The view from up here 86 floors above manhattan was amazing absolutely freezing but amazing. We didn't take as many photos as we normally would up here because gloves and cameras aren't good friends and it wass too cold to leave your fingers out for too long. If you look down the front of the photo you will see the Flatiron building (the triangular shaped building that is in heaps of movies). I think we spent the whole time in ny saying "hey thats in such and such" and "I've seen that in something" We actually found the fountain from the beginning of Friends but it had scaffolding all around it(of course cos that always happens to us) so we didn't take a photo.

Monty python on broadway

We had to do a broadway show while we were in NY. When we were in London Monty Python's Spamalot was playing on the West End but we couldn't afford to go so we thought we would see it on broadway instead. It was absolutely fabulous, hysterically funny. I would really recomend going to see it if you get the chance. It had Clay Aitkin from American idol in it, initially i thought that might have been a bit odd but he was really good. As they were doing there bows at the end of the performance they had the words to "Always look on the bright side of life" projected up and the whole crowd was singing it was pretty cool.

This prop was outside the theatre. Doesn't Scott look like he's up to mischief?

times square

Times Square was absolutely amazing!! It didn't matter what time of day you were there, there were always people everywhere. I spose it didn't help that there is a discount theatre ticket place right in the middle so during the day there were hundreds of people lined up for that. We decided it was too cold and the line was too long so went to the theatre and bought tickets at the box office. It probably cost alot more but hey we got to see more in that 2-3 hours we could have spent in a queue. They were actually rigging up the giant ball that drops at new years eve while we were there.

times square 2

This is so hard trying to input these backwards, so this is the last photo for you but the first for me.

We had an absolutely fabulous time in New York. There was just so much to do, we managed to see quite a bit in a week. I don't really think you would want to stay much longer than that if you were staying in town, everything is go go go now now now. I didn't realise how laid back it is n Vancouver till we go home. I also think it is one of those places that is changing all the time so there would always be new things to see and do.

Our next adventure is Orlando Florida in about 2 and a half weeks. There is a space shuttle launch on the 12th of february and my birthday just happens to be that week so we decided to go to Disneyworld to celebrate the big 25. So unless something really exciting happens before then I will catch up with you then.

love Monique and Scott