16 November 2012

It's the 9-11 Memorial today (thanks to Jac Peggy Mac Mitchell for the tip off re booking requirements).

We had breakfast at one of my favourite chains (are there any independents any more?). Le Pain Quoditien. I opted for the carb, I mean bread basket and jelly (aka Jam) and a boiled egg. Washed down by lovely fresh orange and latte.

Before we actually got to the Memorial we had to go back to our hotel twice. My fault. Once for a wee and once because I'd forgotten my subway card. Good job we'd left plenty of time - so much so we had the chance to circle round the area a couple of times before aiming for the Memorial.

As one would expect the Memorial itself is very beautiful. Tho whilst the pools (called Reflecting Absence; image one) are within the footprint of the Twin Towers they do look quite small in comparison to the buildings that once stood there. I imagine it's a height thing. And as far as memorials go it is not quiet. There's noise from all round as the rebuilding work takes place.

So after that we went Uptown (NOT Top Ranking like Althea and Donna) aiming for the Rockefeller Center (image 3 looking wistfully thro the trees bedecked with decorations). A tip from Lyn McQ was to head to the Top of the Rock.

I didn't even realise you could go up it. I would very much recommend it. So we popped in to get tickets - and essentially we then had 90 minutes to kill until 'our slot'

Obviously as I'd not eaten or had a coffee for 25 minutes we popped into the 'meat sandwich' restaurant for sustenance and then had a walk around the 5th Ave area (eg Saks and the lego shop; sorry Nik no Millennium Falcon!, and the Dr Who-a-like Weeping Angels, image 2)

Then we were whisked up to the 64th floor. By this time it was dark and the city was alive with lights (as one expects of New York - image 4) and a new moon (not off of Taylor Lautner and the Twilight Saga) so photos galore. Two extra points to make; 1) there's a 'light room' up there that changes color and does all manner of light things which was vg; and 2) as you're at a really high point surrounded by ariels why can you not get a phone signal?

A Subway journey later we found ourselves in Times Square and 42nd St. It was bananas. All manner of stuff going on. Annoying people wanting you to go to comedy shows (I am sure there must be the odd funny American), strip shows (I kid you not) and then a whole melange of dressed in costumes for you to have your photo taken with for tips. There was an Elmo which felt odd given the situation. There was also a man wearing just black speedos. And it was chilly. Let's say no more about it.

Anyhoo - Darren's correspondent had recommended tonights dinner establishment. Guys Bar & Kitchen (not a bar and kitchen just for guys - but a PERSON called Guy to be clear). It's new. Guy it transpires is off of a Food Channel programme. Imagine The Great British Bake off without Mel and Sue, Paul and Mary, and....er baking but with people who want to be chefs and host their own tv programme.

I had the meatloaf (an American classic - and something I've never had before) and a sangria (slightly odd combo). Nice place all told.

Then on way to metro there was time for an eggnog latte. Hurrah - we correctly selected the right line to take us back to the hotel! Result.