13 October 2011

The City That Never Sleeps

I've always dreamed of going to New York. I even considered going there for college. As a girl having spent her whole life in the suburbs (albeit near Los Angeles), the idea of the big city with endless opportunities seemed fantastic. So, in 2007, after being miraculously accepted to study abroad in Italy with Accademia Italiana , I finally got the chance to see the Big Apple for myself.

The whole event was a bit less grand than expected as I only had 2 full days to take in a city that could take months years to completely discover. I was accompanied by my mom and stepdad on this mini vacation before I embarked on my onward flight to Florence - alone. New York was unlike anything I'd imagined - you always see it on tv, so you'd think that awestruck feeling wouldn't quite hit as hard, but I was wrong! Being lost in that concrete jungle of skyscrapers can feel strangely claustrophobic, yet liberating at the same time. You can feel possibility in the air. Everything is so compact in New York - which was a perfect transition from Orange County to Italy -  and you walk everywhere, which is the best way to fully take in a city. You can feel it, smell it, touch it - it's great!

One of New York's towering skyscrapers.

But anyway, upon arrival - we checked into our hotel,  which was funny in and of itself. It was a nice hotel (and way too expensive), but it was the tiniest room ever and they gave us one (probably queen sized) bed for all 3 of us to share. What with my parents' snoring, it was a long couple of nights. But after checking in, we got straight to it - going to Bobby Flay's restaurant Bar Americain and then going to see a show - Chicago - before heading back.. Speaking of food,it is all so great and varied - we enjoyed some classic NY pizza on Houston St. one day (howstun, not hue-stun) and steak at Anthony Bourdain's Les Halles restaurant another day (although I have to say...the waiter had a fake French accent that wore off as the hour went on....a little cheesy.)

The fries with chipotle sauce was ah-mazing!

 But we had so much fun exploring the city; I'm an art junkie, so we visited as many museums as we could, including the Museum of Natural History, Metropolitan Museum and the Guggenheim. I was definitely excited about the latter as the architecture is so different and the art it housed was modern and inspired. I love the idea of spiraling upward through this journey of paintings, video installments, 3D art, etc.I absolutely love architecture, so it was awesome to see the innovative Guggenheim, the beautiful Chrysler Building and the classic Empire State Building (especially by night!).

Inside the Guggenheim.

One of the art installations on the ground level. Pretty!

My stepdad and one of my favorites - the disco floor!

I still really want to live here one day...even if it's only for a little while - I mean, I didn't even scratch the surface of things I would love to experience in this city. As cliche as it sounds, I want to get into the art scene, I want to go to one of the cafes at 3am, and go to some of the artsy theaters. But this trip definitely whet my appetite and was a great experience, although it was clouded with the fear and insecurity of knowing I would depart from there alone and into the unknown. But this is something I wanted - to study abroad, go outside my comfort zone...but you know that feeling of anxiousness and uncertainty even in the face of something you want? That's definitely what I felt. But when has that ever stopped me?

Can you feel the chaotic nature of Times Square?

Rockefeller Center. This place has to amazing during Christmas.

St. Patrick's Cathedral

And a close up for good measure. The leaves in front make it feel spooky.

I love taking pictures of reflections.

I wanted to live here - it was so cute and (bonus!) it was right outside the Metropolitan
Museum of Art.

I really (really) wanted to walk across the Brooklyn Bridge (as it's one of my favorites),
but settled for seeing it on a cruise. (One day though...)

New York by night. I feel energetic just looking at this photo.

Another reflection of the little light that can be captured between walls of concrete and glass.

Birds are a recurring theme in mine and Christy's travels.

I love how something I have no interest in (stocks), can turn into something I love.

Another favorite from the trip.

I feel like this one really sums up New York City.

1 comment:

  1. Hi, Thanks for visiting my blog aceguide.blogspot.com and your comments.I visit New Jersey for 3 months every year and twice a week to NYC. I'm in love with that city.
    You are welcome to India. It's a photographer's heaven. Holi is predominantly a festival of North India and colorful, though a bit rowdy. However, Himachal Pradesh is ideal in Holi, beautiful with a cool weather and lots of fun and festivity. If you need any help, let me know.


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