When we originally started planning our summer vacation, we decided to spend one week in Greece, one week in New York, and the last week in Savannah for the wedding.
When Fionn had to go Stateside for a month, these plans got all changed (not that I minded spending 2 months back home!), but we still wanted to go to New York. Fionn knew it pretty well since he went to school up in NY, but I've only been a handful times when I was younger so I was excited to do all the touristy stuff :)
A friend of Fionn's parents very graciously allowed us to stay with her while we were in New York. She's a lifelong New Yorker and was an all around amazing person. So funny, easy to talk to, and was full of good advice for where to go and what to see. She and her boyfriend were so much fun to spend time with, we really couldn't have asked for better hosts, or a better home base-Manhattan!
Fionn was very sweet about taking me to see the touristy things even though he'd been to most of them about a million times. :) So, first stop, Rockefeller Center! Since it was late when we started out, we just walked around and saw the city by night.
Our first full day we went to visit the Museum of Natural History. They gave us complimentary tickets for being military, which was pretty cool! We wandered through the museum for quite a while, and saw some pretty cool stuff!
We stopped for an amazing lunch and then took a walk through Central Park, where we found the famed Waffles and Dinges cart. We had to get a waffle with speculaas spread and whipped cream. Ahhhhhh...to die for!
The Museum of Natural History was nice and all, but since Fionn and I are big history nerds, we were WAY more excited about the Metropolitan Museum! We spent ages looking at stuff in there. They even had a house museum that took you through different eras of American history. I was practically drooling and spent ages carefully moving through each room, from the early colonial days to the late 1800s. It was like my 4 years of college had come to life. They also had an amazing Egyptian exhibit. I'm so nerdy :)
After that we walked around some more, taking in the sights :)
The next day we decided to check out the High Line, which was an old abandoned elevated train track they turned into a park. It was such a cool idea and we had a great time exploring it before we headed for the Meat Packing District and then doing some shopping.
One of the things I really wanted to do while in NYC was see Ground Zero. That terrible day had such a profound impact on everyone, and especially as an American, I felt that I needed to see it for myself.
The monument itself is very elegant, and seeing all the names there is so very poignant. It has a very solemn feeling to it, and everyone seemed to respect that. Hardly anyone was being loud or treating it like another tourist attraction. Fionn commented he wished he had worn his uniform to visit this place, and I agreed. It certainly had that feeling.
After visiting Ground Zero we saw the Statue of Liberty (from afar) and a WWII monument. Then we headed toward Wall Street.
Since we were feeling really overambitious, we went to see the Brooklyn bridge and then headed for China Town and Little Italy! And yes, we ate Chinese pastries AND a canoli (supposedly the best in all of NY...)
Ok, this is getting really picture heavy. So wait for the next part!