Tuesday, August 9, 2011

New York City: Day 2

We didn't set an alarm, thinking that the kids got up so early yesterday, they should try to sleep in.


I should have known better.

They were up at 7am, just like always.

We had breakfast at a horrible place across the street. Okay, not horrible, but ridiculously disappointing. Wouldn't you think that a place with "coffee" in it's name and "frappes" on it's menu would actually be able to fix one? No. Maybe that employee didn't make it in to work today. Sigh...

The weather forecast for today called for scattered showers pretty much the whole day, but the sun was out early [side note: I looked out the hotel window this morning and saw the Freedom Tower, which I didn't see the day before because I didn't look to the right, I guess. It took my breath away because I was surprised.], so we started with walking across part of the Brooklyn Bridge, which J and I had never done before.

As we planned this trip, I knew that we would be using the World Trade Center PATH station at least once. I was NOT prepared for the raw emotion of actually arriving at that stop. Totally took me off guard. Exiting the station are MASSIVE esclators, with World Trade Center at the top. And, given that we got into the city when millions of people were going to work, the entire row of esclators was PACKED with people. I SO wanted a picture, but I probably would have been run over. Seriously. Anyway, stepping out of that station to walk to the subway station that we needed, the area where the towers were is RIGHT in front of you. I REALLY wasn't ready for the tears that came to my eyes then. I should have been prepared for that, but I wasn't. At all. I vividly remember visiting when they were still standing, when I had very fresh dreams of living and working in Lower Manhattan. I was devastated all over again.

BUT, I have three fabulous children that needed me to very quickly pull it together, even if they had no idea how close I was to falling apart.

So, we continued.

Okay. Next time you go to New York, walk across at least part of the Brooklyn Bridge. Even if you have a 6 year old that declares she hates being outside and that it is too hard to walk. Or an almost 2 year old that wants to do it all by herself. Or an 8 year old that you think really might end up alone in Brooklyn because he keeps walking ahead of everyone. Being right under the enormous towers and cables and being able to see a completely different view of Manhattan is amazing. J got both of the big kids Italian Ices at a little stand on the bridge, and it was so fun for them. At first. Then the bees came, and they apparently also love Italian Ice. Z declared that he was done and passed it off to me because I had been letting A have little bites of both of theirs. B kept eating hers but would periodically either scream or practically fling the Ice away (possibly almost onto other people) to shoo the bees away. Amazingly, as we started back to Manhattan, the bees left us alone, so the kids finished their treats in peace.

We went to lunch afterwards at South Steet Seaport. Unfortunately, I remembered from other times that even though you can see the seaport from the Brooklyn Bridge, it is a huge pain to get from one to the other. We actually took the subway TO Brooklyn before ending up where we needed to be (okay, so that part was J's error, but it might as well have been the best way to get there). We got Nathan's hotdogs for lunch (well, everyone else did... I hate hot dogs so I ended up with Bacon Ranch Fries that I barely touched). I think all of the kids must have been suffering from low blood sugar because they were hilarious at lunch, playing with the toys that came in their meals and just having FUN. B about flipped when she realized you could see the Statue of Liberty from where she was sitting.

After lunch, we went out onto the top deck to take in more views of the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges, Brooklyn, and the statue. When we were trekking back to the subway, it started to rain. At this point, we were going back to the hotel and planned to take the ferry back across to Manhattan to go to the Intrepid museum. Mom decided that she wanted to stay at the hotel and let A take a nap, so J and I got Z and B (and the umbrellas) and headed for the ferry. We took the Hudson River Walk to get there and took some awesome pictures of the city, even though it was raining hard. Both kids were happy and laughing and smiling, and it was just a good time. The closer we got to the ferry stop, though, we could tell that there was NO ONE there. We found a security guard that told us this particular ferry was REALLY slow and apparently only runs once an hour. We just missed one, and with the museum closing at 5pm, we knew we would never make it. So, given the lack of coffee at breakfast, we went to Starbucks and treated the kids to cake pops, which I'm pretty sure are made with some addictive drug as excited as they get about them.

Even though we missed out on the Intrepid, the riverwalk and good time with the big kids was amazing. Sometimes I love when things don't go as planned.

Dinner was a local parlor's pizza that arrived an hour after we ordered it and was lukewarm but actually tasted okay. More pool time. Good bedtime for the kiddos.

I still love NY.

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