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Saturday, 5 November 2011

New York, New York!

This time around, I had planned to really get my act together and do some proper tourist stuff in New York. I nearly managed it too, got that Central Park tour done and had a big Downtown Tour planned for the Saturday morning and afternoon. Of course, then my life got in the way. I headed out to Hoboken on the Friday night to see some of my old friends from my Summer J1, ended up getting pretty inebriated. Fell asleep on the train on the way home (just like the old days!) so didn't get back to my hostel until after 6am. Obviously managed to sleep in and miss the tour. Didn't seem like the worst idea once I woke up and saw the snow 3 inches thick outside the window.

Later that night, I headed out to Woodlawn in the Bronx to meet up with a friend of mine. Unfortunately, they were going to a Halloween Party and him and all of his friends had these amazing costumes on. I was in jeans. We went out to this bar called the Heritage, where I managed to speak to one American person the entire night. Everyone was Irish, it was like being in Dublin almost. Ended up in a nightclub that was like Coppers on a slightly smaller scale. You could even smoke in the bar; I got so excited that I chain-smoked 18 cigarettes in about half an hour. Woodlawn is a world of it's own, great place to visit but not sure my liver would survive living there! I did pass Yankee Stadium on my way back into the city although I was too hungover to take a picture.

On the Monday, I went on a free walking tour in Brooklyn. We had the cutest old guide named Ed. First tour guide I've met who announced that he rarely said 'Follow me everyone', it was more likely to be 'Hey guys, wait up!' So old and sweet. He took us on the Subway out to Brooklyn where we walked a little bit around the Brooklyn Heights area then down to the Promenade where there were some breathtaking views of Lower Manhattan, including the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island and the Brooklyn Bridge. I probably took around 10 million pictures of the Brooklyn, Manhattan and Williamsburg Bridges.

That night, I met up with the new Mr and Mrs Byrne fresh from their relaxing week in Cancun, Mexico. We went for dinner in the lovely Tír na nÓg restaurant by Penn Station before heading up to Times Square, an area I hadn't actually set foot within 10 blocks of this time around being there. I knew I needed a picture of Henry the Dinosaur there too! Found an Irish bar (like there is an opportunity to drink in a bar that's not Irish around Times Square) and had a few drinks. Nice way to end my trip.

Moral of the Story - no matter how many times you visit NYC, it is still possible not to visit a single museum. Make sure to get out and see something other than the traditional sights. Also make sure to visit the boroughs. You meet some special people out there. You know who you are.

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