Friday, April 13, 2007

Walking and Eating our way through NYC

In NYC, we made a conscious effort to travel as we have in previous trips. Our travel style would most likely be described as endless wandering with little planning and lots of eating local cuisine (up to this point we haven't been doing that).

We took the commuter train from Newark to NY Penn Station and then took the subway to a stop four blocks from a friend's apartment in the East Village. I have to say mass transit in the Northeast was great. The train arrived on time and the subway was self-explanatory. It was impossible to get lost, especially since we stopped at the first bookstore to get a detailed street and subway stop map. The convenient transportation lends itself to less reliance on cars and a lot more walking.

New Yorkers probably walk more in a day than most people do in a month.

On most days, we ended up taking the subway to an interesting neighbor and wondering and eating our way around the world as we walked through the city. We explored a small corner of Brooklyn and of course had Brooklyn pizza and crossed the Brooklyn bridge (where we were given a lecture about the history of several buildings in our view and George Washington's battles). Passing through Chinatown, we bought buns and dumplings at a meat market and deli where only Chinese was spoken. And later on that night we had Thai Tom Yum and French crepes. And this was only our first full day. Our palette was savoring the reverse dim sum world food experience.

On the second day, we explored uptown by gawking at the Guggenheim, which was under construction, immersing our cultural curiosity in the Metropolitan, taking a stroll through Central Park and eating $8 bagel and lox (without prices on the menu, we didn't realize each of our bagels would cost that much). Later that night we when to a great Cuban restaurant and digested by walking to Flatiron, which is the first skyscraper and a triangular building to fit in the odd piece of land.

By third day, our legs were slightly sore but not enough to keep us from wondering a bit. We walked through downtown and past the site of World Trade Center. It was an overwhelming and surreal experience to see the large site that once was home to two large twin towers. The buildings surrounding the site were stained with soot and many were still closed for business. After a pause in remembrance, we had to quickly walk away due to the heaviness of the emotions settling in. We walked to the Tribeca neighborhood, where artists and studios displaced from Soho now occupy warehouse lofts and people- and car-watched from a bench.

Our days in NYC were fun and carefree. We were traveling light and spontaneously, without having to worry about driving and parking Minnie (we left her in NJ to rest for a few days).

Leaving Minnie in New Jersey saved us a tremendous about of money too.

All of our food cravings were satisfied - we had Italian, French, American, Cuban, Chinese, Thai, and Vietnamese. We can't wait to visit and eat through NYC again. Thanks CG and KS for your hospitality.

1 comment:

  1. Only Brooklyn pizza can put a smile like that on your face!