Day 2 was great! I am happy to be writing this blog as it not only serves as a cool form of content for you, but as documentation of this incredible experience. I got up pretty early to write the blog for day 1 (5:30am) and then proceeded to catch up on edits. After Joe woke up (at like 12pm... jeez) we were on our way to Manhattan!
We wanted to get off the subway at Grand Central Station because... well it's Grand Central Station. I've heard that parts of Union station in Toronto is inspired by Grand Central Station and while I do see the similarities, there is a unique beauty and history to GCS that cannot be replicated. The artwork on the ceiling is beautiful and reminded me of some of the architectural art I had witnessed in Portugal.
From there we transitioned from #archiloving to #foodporn. Jovian had heard word of the boiled sausage trend in New York. To be honest this sounded extremely odd to me seeing as how I had only ever had my street meat grilled. I was delightfully surprised to have what was easily the greatest (and most expensive) street dog EVER! The flavour was surreal! Funny thing is that I didn't even get to apply my own condiments. Instead, the gentlemen applied a preset that in culmination seemed to create insight into the life of an angel.
After consuming gods work, we decided to walk in the direction of Times Square. We walked for a few blocks before coming across the New York Public Library. Unfortunately we didn't find Jake Gyllenhaal (The Day After Tomorrow reference) but none the less we observed some pretty cool fixtures and hallways within the library. After leaving the library we headed over to Bryant park. The park was jam packed with readers, sun bathers and families just taking in the great weather & beautiful view of NYC's iconic architecture.
I must say that NYC truly does feel like an upscaled Toronto. There are truly so many striking similarities between the cities including its culture and character. Its funny, there was a hostess at the Hard Rock Cafe that after discovering where we were from said, "Why would you come from such a beautiful place to here?". The mid 20's looking male looked genuinely baffled by our travel. This was cool to hear but I feel that after living anywhere long enough will eliminate the aw factor. That in culmination with the human's natural desire to travel and see new places results in a massive down play of where you are from. The truth is that every city is beautiful, and that is not intended to be a super cheesy statement. I truly believe that every city is beautiful in its own way, some people just tend to looe track of what makes their's special.
Penn Station for some reason was a very special location for me. It is not the prettiest of locations but you can almost feel the 107 years of history associated with the building. I won't pretend to know/understand the station's history and relevance. In fact the building's exterior is what drew me in, but inside of Pen Station is what I found to be intriguing. We eventually stepped outside and took at least a million and 1 photos of me, Joe and failed attempts at intimidating birds.
We also visited the B&H, Sam Ash, Midtown Comics and the original Hard Rock Cafe! Such a cool experience to whiteness used equipment from some of my favourite bands. B&H was massive, like truly massive! B&H carries every camera, lens, headphone, light setup, etc. While in Sam Ash I got to fool around with an Ed Sheeran 'Divide' mini Martin for the first time and damn... I'd love that as my next guitar. While eating dinner at Hard Rock, the server forgot to submit an order for my appetizer and in return gave me a FREE SUNDAE!
We walked out of dinner to find Times Square prettier than I could've imagined. It was illuminated by the 8,500 square feet of LED screen. I think that the amazing part for me was witnessing the thousands upon thousands of other people experiencing it for the first time. There was a man in a red suit that seemed to be truly submerged in his experience and my photo of him stands as my favourite of the trip so far.
So that was the first full day in New York, and it was a damn good one. We saw some amazing architecture, ate good food and capped off with a few good drinks and a riveting game of billiards (I won of course).
Day 3 will be spent in and around Williamsburg, so you'll need to come back for day 3!