So Good They Named It Twice

This article was written 15 years ago in 2005 when I was just 20, so I ask you not to judge the writing too harshly! The text is as it was originally published.

First thing's first, I need to apologise for spelling and grammar etc etc in all of these blog entries. before any more sticklers get annoyed at these garbled scripts, the reason mostly is due to the time limits and I need to let you know it frustrates me as much as you - especially as I don't get a chance to read it back until I get your comments :)

Well James and I are in the Big Apple. We moved out of the sober Washington DC pretty quickly after we had seen all the major sights - the Whitehouse was (typically) surrounded by a police cordon which meant we couldn't get very close until later in the day when it had been moved back. We were also denied the opportunity to take any photos by a cop-on-a-bike, who was unsuccessfully trying to marshal all the tourists. Most people realised if they walked back out of pedalling distance he couldn't stop them.

We then got hold of our tickets for the Washington Monument. It's a huge structure, and so is the queue usually, but we darted in due to reduced sales (Sept 11th?), but had to wait until our time came up so spent the next hour and a bit exploring one of the other wings of the mall. We walked towards the Capitol, and popped into the National Museum for the only bit of culture that DC can provide before heading back to the Washington Monument for our viewing. There is surprisingly little in the way of viewing space, but after out peer in all four directions we headed back down and out. The rest of the day was spent looking at the (huge) Lincoln Memorial and then taking a four hour Greyhound to New York.

After all the administrative and frankly boring austerity of DC (not worth another visit but for the three or four monuments and the Whitehouse) it was refreshing to reach a city with some life. James had been feeling pretty ropey all day, and Washington wasn't doing us any favours as the heat was stifling and there was little in the way of shade.

New York on the other hand interested me from the moment we arrived, but I think I was/still am expecting a lot from this place, so it may just be childish excitement. We booked into what seems to be an oversubscribed youth hostel, grabbed some subs for dinner and chowed down to Oceans 11 (one channel only) and an early night.

This morning we awoke of our own accord and headed down to South Ferry at the bottom of Manhattan to explore the area (Battery Park, Wall St), find a Starbucks for coffee (living the American dream) and then get a trip over to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. A few hot hours later we arrived back. It had been a really good chance to explore some of the offshore attractions and see the skyline from the water. Plenty of photos too. Back on land, we made a beeline for downtown (more food needed) and ended up at the vast expanse that is ground zero. Although we knew we were heading for it, it eerily arises as you approach, as one of the major features of NYC seems to be an overcrowding of towering buildings, then suddenly, in the middle of this metropolis, there is nothing. Even before you see the signs and the displays you know where you are.

After some more subs (James is sick of them) we took the subway back to the hostel and checked back in. (room change). I also did some haphazard sewing repairs to my backpack which has started to break at the top, a new type of stitch called Limping Stitch was used.

And so we have just got back from some wholesome American food (pizza) and will be having an early night to see the further delights of the city tomorrow.

This post was first published on Tue Sep 13 2005

Andy Higgs
The author

My name is Andy Higgs and I am a business founder, design leader, occassional surfer and travel enthusiast based in the UK.

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