More NYC

Continuing where I left off with the last post, here are some more photos from my trip to New York City. Okay, it’s not exactly picking up where I left off. I’m missing a day of photos, they’re on a card I seem to have left at work. So I’ll have to go back a day in time on the next post.

These photos are from Friday, my last full day in the city. I spent the afternoon shopping with Matt and Krishna. Before heading out, I took some shots on the corner of 78th and 2nd Ave, where Krishna lives.

78th St, facing 2nd Ave.
Looking north up 2nd Ave.
I didn't eat here, but the metallic tiling is cool.

We took the subway downtown, and exited at the Municipal Building.

Looking up constantly hurts your neck.
Massive arch is massive!

There is also an old, above-ground subway station there.

Tiles tiles tiles tiles TILES
I wonder who gets to clean the grout and replace any missing tiles?

Shopping was uneventful, we strolled up Broadway and hit likely places to find what we were looking for. One thing I noticed: every block has a set of the same stores. H&M, OMG and Essential Clothing are repeated over and over. I guess for the lazy people who can’t be bothered to walk a block or two from where they happen to fall out of their cab?

Sidenote: I walked a whole lot in NYC. More than I’ve walked during several years of living in a 5 block town in Alaska, for sure. By Friday, I had developed a very large and painful blister on my right foot. I kept draining it, but Wednesday and Thursday it felt like a large marble under the ball of my foot. By Friday, it was like a large marble with spikes in it.

After we shopped ourselves out, Matt and Krishna went back to the apartment, and I headed for the Rockefeller Center. I wanted to get some shots of the city at night. I waited in line to buy a ticket for “The Top of the Rock” for about 45 minutes. Leaving the ticket counter, I happened right into an open elevator. I thought “that wasn’t so bad!” Then the elevator stopped after ascending one floor. The Center employee waiting for us said “Everyone please step out and follow the walkway to your left.” Clearly we were not at the Top of the Rock as everyone in the elevator expected we would be at the end of this ride, so these instructions were met with either stunned silence or a more audible “Buhhh…wha?” from the bolder passengers. No one moved. After a good 5 seconds, I realized the employee was not going to repeat herself, and I was apparently the only passenger still in command of both my mind and body, so I said “Let’s go” and stepped out of the elevator.

Of course, with the spiked marble blister on my foot, it was more of a lurch than a bold stride, as at this point in the day I was limping like a wounded giraffe.

We made our way around what I’m sure is a delightful interpretive installation on the history of the Rockefellers and their Center, but I ignored all that shit. I just wanted to get to the top of the damn building before my foot fell off.

At the end of the installation, we found not one but three lines on tiered platforms, in front of three giant screens. We were herded into the third line, closest to the front of the little theatre. The screens cheerfully informed us that Line 3 had 12 minutes to go, and wouldn’t you know, there were three 4 minute videos about Rockefeller and the Center to keep us company. I don’t remember anything from the videos, I was too busy trying to keep the Korean tourist group from pushing around me to the front of the line.

After our 12 minutes were up, we were instructed to go around the corner and…wait for it….GET IN ANOTHER LINE. This one put us on our final elevator, though, so my journey was coming to an end. Once on the elevator, all the lights went out and we found ourselves staring straight up through the clear ceiling into the elevator shaft while little LED lights denoted every passing floor.

Once at the top, I still had to go up an escalator then another set of stairs before I could get around the giant plexiglass barriers that surround the edges of the building.

I arrived just in time for sunset. It had been unseasonably warm all week, culminating in temperatures in the upper 80’s that Friday. The humidity was visible as a fog around the city. The following photos use a technique called High Dynamic Range (HDR) to capture what I saw better than a standard photo could.

So many buildings, so many people.
The Empire State Building dominates the skyline.

I waited around for twilight to fade so I could capture the city lights. But that’s another post for another time.