Daily Archives: April 15, 2010

NYC, day 2

Thursday morning we were back for more bag-sniffing from the dog and a free ferry ride (because we are all about FREE).

Good Morning, Ma'am

Well, mostly free. Some things do cost money (besides the subway, known as the thing I forgot to photograph).

Radio City Music Hall is not one of those specific “must see” places for me in NYC, but since it is a famous spot, I took the picture. The place we had tickets for is right across the street, with an address made famous by a TV show I have never seen.

The show is called “30 Rock” and the address is 30 Rockefeller Plaza. The building is The Rockefeller Center.

Rockefeller Center

The Swarovski "Joie" Crystal Chandelier

It also has a beautiful chandelier hanging in the lobby that is rather interesting when seen from the lower level.  It is made of 14,000 crystals, is 10.6 m in length and weights 2.3 tons. It stretches over 3 floors in height. Swarovski Crystal has an impressive shop (pardon me… “boutique”) at the basement level. My family did not let me walk slowly through there.  (They must think I’m distracted by shiny things.)

Please click on images to enlarge.

We already had our tickets, and even though we arrived earlier than the stated time, we were allowed to begin our tour.

After learning about the visionary Mr. Rockefeller and having our picture taken…

… ~~~ … ~~~ …

See this familiar famous photo?

Well, here’s us:

And then an elevator whisked us up to the Top of the Rock.

Views from Top of the Rock

And here is where I had my meltdown.

Vacation is hard work, folks.
Here is a little advice:

It is best to smile for the camera.
It is best if only one person has a meltdown at a time.

Turns out it is also best if the family photographer is given a little respect… and then given some space.

“All I wanted” was a family picture in front of the Empire State Building.  You know, THIS

But without the crying 10-year-old.  (Don’t believe me? Click on the picture to embiggen.)
He complained that the light was in his eyes. I hissed that it had been cloudy for the past 10 minutes when I had been trying to get everyone together for the damn picture.  Yes, literally — it took TEN MINUTES to round everyone up for a picture in front of the Empire State Building.
By the time I was done giving them all a piece of my mind (a piece that I probably shouldn’t have given away, because really? I’m not doing so great at remembering things these days), I was in no mood at all to have someone else take a picture of the 6 of us.

Don’t go off and cry in a corner when on the observation deck of a tall building. I’m pretty sure the security chatter was about the unstable person in the corner who might have been a “jumper” risk.  I wasn’t and I’m not. For starters, I couldn’t have climbed that glass wall. Then there’s the part about me being rather uneasy about unguarded heights. And finally, I’m fond of living.  But they didn’t know that.  MusicMan finally came over and gave me a hug.  He’s a compassionate guy.

Before we left the building, SuperDad did purchase the family picture of us all sitting on the fake beam (I posted it because we paid $30 for that picture). He obviously was placating me and I appreciate it.  I’m sure I didn’t deserve it after losing my temper.

And then we got coffee — because coffee often makes everything better — (the younger boys had hot cocoa), made a bathroom stop, and went outside.

Outside Rockefeller Center

Well.  [clears throat, changes subject]

After an experience like that, I needed to spend a little time in church. Luckily, St. Patrick’s Cathedral is just around the corner.

St. Patrick's Cathedral

Of course, being New York City, we had to dodge taxi cabs to get across the street.

I’m not Catholic, so the raised fancy pulpit is a different sight for me.  Our visit occurred during Holy Week (Maundy Thursday, to be specific) and the organist was practicing a bit and showing off those pipes.  The Pieta was impressive, though not nearly as moving as the incredible Pieta at St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome.

But let’s move on, shall we?  There’s plenty more to see.

The menfolk got sticker shock (and some smelly new fragrance on a card) in Saks Fifth Avenue.  I kept suggesting that they should NOT touch every single $3,000 item they could find.  It was embarrassing enough that I did not take any pictures there.  But at least they washed their hands.

NYC Public Library Lion

sign over doorway inside NYC Public Library

ceiling of a library reading room

We love libraries

After resisting the urge to stay put in one of those reading rooms, we trekked over to Grand Central Station for lunch in the lower level.  The ceiling of the main lobby is known for the constellations painted on it, but I wasn’t very impressed, so I didn’t take any pictures inside.  I did, however, have a delicious dish of Lo Mein, in honor of our future afternoon activities.

Oh, yes! We are only half-done with our day. We still need to walk past the Empire State Building, the flatiron building (no picture), and find a subway to take us to another part of Manhattan. Like I said, vacationing is hard work.  But nowhere near as hard as life was for immigrants to NYC…

Sadly this museum was closed.

We headed on into Chinatown to get some delicious ice cream: ginger, lychee, and black sesame, just to name a few flavors. It was delicious! I now want a recipe for ginger ice cream. YUM!!

Columbus Park

And to think that I saw it on Mulberry Street! 😛

Every fire truck we saw had a list of fallen firefighters from September 11, 2001.

Please click to enlarge this picture.

After more walking that took us through Little Italy, we made our way up to New York University and Washington Square Park… where I collapsed on a bench and begged my husband to rub my feet. Which he did. At least one kid fell asleep on the cement bench. The rest of us did quite a bit of people -watching. We were there for at least an hour.

Washington Square Park

Washington Square Park

We were also ahead of schedule (which included “avoid a gang war”) and we needed to re-think the remainder of the day.
My feet still hurt, but they were no longer on strike. We checked our map, found a subway station and rode back to Times Square. Next stop, Toys’R’Us…

I was disappointed to learn that they charged to ride the indoor Ferris Wheel. The line to buy tickets was long and there weren’t many tickets left for the evening. I think SnakeMaster was disappointed, too, but he’s a trooper and said he didn’t mind. He did think the dinosaur was pretty cool; the 2-story Barbie house was not his favorite. 😛

And look! Gary‘s pal Georges Le Soq has friends who hang out in New York City!

We found a place to buy some New York style pizza (which was delicious) and waited for appropriate darkness outside. It was quite a sight to walk back to Times Square!

Then it was back to the ferry and “home” for the night.


Day 3 still to come…