I actually meant to have only one post about NY and BEA, but I realized that it would be way too long. As a result, the intro to my previous post is a bit misleading, since it talks about the city and I really only went into detail about BEA — sorry about that. THIS post, however, will include my thoughts on New York City.
I’m kind of sad that we weren’t able to explore New York more fully, but I am not capable of handling crowds very well, so dealing with a conference and sight-seeing in one of the most populated cities in the world was a lot to handle. We stayed in a hotel very, very close to Times Square because the convention center is located around that area. So, for the first two days my only experience with New York was with Times Square and its surroundings.
Times Square was alright. I liked seeing all the lights and ads, and the stores were pretty cool, but meh. It was probably the dirtiest place I’ve ever been in my life and just so FULL of people. There were some things I enjoyed, like getting up on the giant board and exploring the shops. (They have the coolest Toys ‘R’ Us there!!!) Overall, though, I was kind of disappointed and that made me sad. I believed that I hated New York and, for some reason, that made me feel like a failure as a human being.
But that all went away once we got out of the Times Square area and started doing proper New York City things. We went to the Met, which was a ridiculous walk from our hotel. Google Maps said it was 3 miles, but we all think it lied. Although, the hot weather might have had something to do with how difficult that walk was. I LOVED the Met, but I usually love museums, so that’s not anything surprising. I kind of wish I checked it out online before we went, because there was some sort of Punk Couture exhibit that we totally missed. *sigh*
On Friday, my mom and I went to the 9/11 memorial in lower Manhattan. It’s a beautiful memorial, but there were people standing in front of the pools, smiling and taking pictures. Both my mom and I felt like that was disrespectful, but however they want to remember their visit, I guess.
After that, we went to Wall Street. It was hot, I was not in a good mood and didn’t particularly want to go, but I actually enjoyed this part of New York. Not so many people, the streets were clean, and I didn’t automatically think “food poisoning” every time I walked by a food place.
The last night, we took the time to go to The Empire State Building, which I absolutely loved. Seeing the city at night was fantastic, and that’s probably where I took most my pictures. The 86th floor was nice for pictures, but it was very windy, which freaked me out for some reason. I think the wind kept reminding me just how far up I was, and I was on the brink of a slight anxiety attack when we went back in. The 102th floor was perfect, though the pictures weren’t as good, because it was closed in.
Of course, I got us lost on the walk back, so my mom and I were wandering around NYC at 1:30 AM trying to figure out just where we were. Surprisingly, that was fun. (Not sarcasm — I can’t speak for my mother, but I kind of enjoyed wandering around the city in the middle of the night.) Eventually, we figured it out and were able to get back to the hotel in time to take a short nap and then hop in a car to the airport for very early return flights.
Overall, I had fun. I wish we had more time, but I also think it’s kind of nice that we were able to get a feel for the city before planning a proper visit. We’re definitely going back, and now I have an idea of what to expect — and I know NOT to visit Times Square!