Friday, August 12, 2011

New York City

We elected to take a coach tour from the KOA to explore NYC - and we are soooo glad we did!
Our driver, Dennis, took us safely through the unspeakable traffic with a maximum of comfort, while Mitch, our guide, did his best to educate us! 
'Forget about it,' was the most important phrase to remember, he told us and explained the usage.
He let us know in no uncertain terms that New Jersey's only value is as a scapegoat and joke.
Mitch grew up in New York and shared experiences, local knowledge and history.
He also guided us through the intricacies of these major tourist attractions, jumping queues, staying sane and getting the best photo opportunities!  Thanks Mitch and Dennis and KOA.
There she is.
We couldn't help thinking of and quoting 'When Jesse came across the sea'.
It was good to see the Statue of Liberty for the first time from the water, just as the immigrants did.
A very thought provoking experience as we considered what it had meant along side current events.
(That was the final week of the 'debt crisis' meetings, with Obama telling the nation, This doesn't mean we can't afford to pay our bills......????

A dream fulfilled.

Ellis Island where the immigrants were 'processed'.
'Wait in line. Inspection. Wait in line. Questions.  Wait in line.'
from 'When Jesse came across the sea'.

We passed 'Ground Zero' and were amazed at the amount of rebuilding already accomplished and at the scale of the plans for future development.  Mitch explained that the city Mayors of the past decade or so have made changes that have reduced noise (no honking or BIG fine), traffic jams (no blocking the grid or BIG fines) and increased recreation areas (by converting old wharves into parks).

Lachlan, Mitch, Hamish

The Empire State building.

from the top....

Hey Mum!  Look what I found on Madison Avenue!
(E's Mum's name is Zara.)
We always knew you had refined tastes!

Times Square - only it wasn't.

And that unspeakable traffic.....

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