24 December 2012

New York City - Accommodation and Exploration

I'll be honest here. I really do not have the slightest clue on how I am doing this trip, and how the things that happen to me actually happen. I plan hardly anything, and when I do it is always last-minute and never ever goes to plan anyway... but alas it seems that this trip certainly still has plenty of surprises left.

Let me begin.

Back during my stay with a family in Bellingham, Washington state for HelpX (the program where you work in exchange for room and food) I mentioned that I was to be heading to New York City soon. They in turn informed me that they have a good family friend who lives there, one who they were sure would be happy to offer their spare room to me for a few days free of charge. They emailed the friend, they replied, everything got organized, and a few days ago now I arrived in my free accommodation... which happens to be on the 15th floor of an apartment in the very heart of Manhattan...wow!

Here are some shots from my window:

6th Avenue down below. I really love this city.
Same window, just looking to the left now

Oh yeah... did I mention if I stick my head out the window and look down the street, I can see the Empire State Building? Ha!
To make things even better, Tammy (the lady who owns the apartment) is away for the next five days, so not only do I get to stay in her place for free, I now get the place to myself! After months of hostels, friends couches, and HelpX accommodation stays where I had to work quite hard, the opportunity for five days of my own bed, own room, and peace and quiet, is more welcomed than you could possibly imagine.

This is easily one of the greatest, luckiest things that has ever happened to me. Ever. Hostels are expensive in NYC, and after traveling for such a long time now the less money I spend the better, but the best thing of all is the chance to relax and see the city at a pace and convenience I never thought I'd ever get. Cool.

Determined not to let the five days of freedom and stability pass me by, I set out to see as much of the city as I could, making the most of the brilliant location of the apartment. Oh yeah, it happened to be Thanksgiving the following day too, which meant the city was extremely busy, and the annual Thanksgiving's Parade too, woo!

The city is even more busy than usual on Thanksgivings Day!

Yes! I got to see Spongebob Squarepants! My trip is now complete.
Micky Mouse has let himself go over the years it appears... check out that beer gut haha!
I've officially stepped foot in the famous Times Square

I really like this shot

Found the Rockefeller Center ice ring. Very cool.

Stumbled across this store! Easily a highlight of my day to find this!
New York City Public Library
Grand Central Station
Madison Square Garden. It was amazing.

With the streets closed due to the parade, it allowed me to experience an extremely rare phenomenon... a New York City street completely void of people and cars. I really felt lucky for this simple fact to be honest.
The Empire State Building from afar
The Chrysler Building
The iconic Flatiron Building
I knew when I saw it during the day that I just had to return again at night. So at midnight, that's what I did. And it was awesome.
And that's what I did... on only my first day of 5 actually! It was a long day, but with only a limited time in the this dream city of mine I am determined to push myself and make the absolute most of it before it is time to move on again.

Four more days until Tammy returns, it is going to be intense!


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