Flying towards the distant lights of New York City, I thought about our last visit to the “City that Never Sleeps”, eighteen years ago. We brought our (then) six-month old, his stroller and all the other paraphernalia that seems to accumulate around babies like the cloud of dust that floats along with Pig-Pen. Flash-forward eighteen years; he’s away at university and we’re off to New York to celebrate our twenty-fifth anniversary, just the two of us!!
After a good night at our midtown hotel, we began our three-day exploration of the city in the company of a volunteer from Big Apple Greeter. Dick collected us from the lobby of our hotel and shared his time and his love of New York City, gave us an overview of the metro system, an orientation to the street system and led us on an informative ramble from Battery Park to Central Park. Among other things, we chatted about photography, New York architecture and living a creative life. Dick patiently waited while we photographed whatever captured our attention.
Wall Street and the New York Stock Exchange
9/11 Memorial and One World Trade Center
(where I wish I’d taken the time to set up a long exposure of the South Pool)
Past rental bike racks and public art
It was lunch time as we walked along the Esplanade towards Battery Park. The weather was mild and we noticed quite a few people eating take-away lunches in the narrow park that looks across to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty.
From there we hopped another subway line up to the Metropolitan Museum where we followed Dick up to the Roof Garden, which offers amazing views of the city skyline beyond the trees of Central Park.
We lingered for a bit before descending to street level and entering Central Park, the most visited park in the United States! Dick led us past the Alice in Wonderland sculpture, the Loeb Boathouse, Bethesda Fountain and onto the Mall, which is where we finally parted ways – more than four hours after our Big Apple Greeter first welcomed us to New York City!
We really appreciated this informative, relaxed orientation to the city and whether you’re a first time visitor to New York City or you’re planning your first return visit in several years, we highly recommend you visit the Big Apple Greeter website and “Request a Greet”. If you’re lucky enough to be matched with a volunteer greeter, we hope your experience matches ours.