Start Spreading the News

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If you really want to overload yourself and all your senses, go to New York City. Everything you've ever heard about NYC is probably true, and yes, it really is a city that never sleeps. I wasn't really looking forward to driving in NYC but thanks to Google Maps' excellent instructions we managed to find our way into the city fairly painlessly, over the Triborough Bridge, down FDR drive and straight onto 35th Street and our hotel. The room was already available by the time we arrived so we dumped our gear, stowed the car in the nearby parking garage, and hit the big city.

And a big city it is! Our hotel was in Midtown, about halfway up Manhattan Island and about a block from the Empire State Building. We wasted no time in getting on the famous double-decker sightseeing bus and started seeing everything we could.

There was and is way too much going on in Manhattan to describe everything in detail, so here's a short stream-of-consciousness ramble of the places we went and things we've seen in the last couple of days...

The huge Empire State Building and Rockafeller Centre, checking for cheap theatre tickets on 42nd Street, the amazing flashing neon lights of Times Square, lots and lots of yellow taxis, the shiny Chrysler building, the powerful impact of the Ground Zero and 9/11 memorials, police cars everywhere you look, more neon - SO much neon flashing at you constantly, seeing the Brooklyn Bridge from the Manhattan Bridge, with the city and Lady Liberty behind, Battery Park, Wall Street and the waterfront, walking through Central Park, seeing Jackson Pollock's work at the Solomon R Guggenheim Museum, walking along Fifth Avenue, Tiffanys, Saks and the Apple Store, visiting the Hard Rock Cafe and the Disney Store, taking the kids to a Comedy Club on 43rd Street then having to debrief the kids afterwards, feeding squirrels in Central Park, listening to rap music with a black brother who was trying to sell me his rap CD, catching a yellow cab with a driver who spoke little english, finding 7 "I love NY" Tshirts for $10, the girls shopping for clothes while the boys were waiting, waiting, waiting for the girls shopping for clothes, security checks at The Met, the constant wail of police sirens, seeing the spot where John Lennon was shot, going through Chinatown, Little Italy, Greenwich Village, Soho, Harlem, and Brooklyn, finding that the service and food at MacDonalds is just as bad wherever you go in the world. Oh, and the heat! The stifling heat in NYC for the last two days... over 100 degrees in the old numbers!

That's what New York City feels like... It comes at you, so fast and constant and relentlessly, it's hard to form complete mental sentences. It just pours itself over you, overloading you with to much stuff until it all becomes a blur of experiences. It's a great city.

More to come...

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