We visited the Big Apple earlier this year for the first time. Approaching JFK, the excitement was palpable. Four hours later - having endured the longest passport control queue I've ever experienced - we were in our yellow cab heading into Manhattan. There is nothing else quite like the scale of the Manhattan skyline and our necks discovered new, painful shapes and positions as we craned to catch a glimpse of them.
We stayed in a delightful boutique hotel, the Iroquois in West 44th St, located right in the beating heart of the city. The word "Manhattan" has been translated as "island of many hills" from the Lenape language. At the time of European contact in the 16th and 17th centuries, the Lenape inhabited a region on the North Atlantic coast in what anthropologists call the Northeastern Woodlands. Although never politically unified, it is frequently referred to as Lenapehoking ("Lenape country"). It roughly comprised the area around and between the Delaware and lower Hudson rivers.
NYC is iconic and every corner reveals a new delight and possible photo opportunity. I like taking candid shots, and my Lumix G3 allows me to be fairly surreptitious having a swivel LCD screen allowing me to look down at a scene directly ahead of me. These NYPD officers were deep in some kind of discussion and largely unaware of my presence.
These two gentleman had just exited Bill's Piano Bar and I thought they looked as though they'd walked out from the set of an old movie. Not so surprising, as to walk into Bill's Piano Bar is to walk right back to the mid 1920's. www.billsnyc.com/history/index.htm
Whilst the weather was a little dull, we had a wonderful day of snow which was the visual icing on the cake. It will be a long time before the delightful memory fades of our snowy stroll through Central Park fired by some Bloody Marys at The Boathouse beside a roaring log fire and amid a cheery and eclectic mix of New Yorkers meeting up and making the most of the weekend.
We visited the 9/11 Memorial site on a crisp, razor sharp winter's day under an impossibly blue sky. Once there, the scale is such that it took our frozen breaths away. One re-plays back in the mind much of the now iconic imagery that appeared on our tv screens and it can be difficult to really picture how that day must have looked, sounded and tasted as those tragic events played out. The memorial is tasteful and I found the sheer scale of the events astounding standing as we were in the exact spot. The new replacement building, The Freedom Tower, ascends defiantly skywards and will stand 1.1776 feet tall on the site of the former World Trade Centre and is the work of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation. I'd recommend New York to anyone. There's just so much to see and do and the food is wonderful. We cannot wait to take another bite out of the Big Apple!
All images taken with Lumix G3.