Friday, November 18, 2011

(14) PA - Full circle (NYC)

Today our tour of the Big Apple comes full circle as we find our way back to Time Square. There are some interesting little things along the way that you don't usually see in tourism brochures or websites. I think they are the kind of things that I often wonder about when I see footage, photographs or websites of some places around the world. Most of the time you only get to experience those bits when you go there yourself, but sometimes that is not possible, so maybe - if you're anything like me - you get to see some things through my eyes today. Join me, why don't you :)

Trapeze School of New York. Hmm... I wonder what you learn there? ;) I took a few shots of this as we were driving by and was very happy to have this one of them in action. It doesn't look half as interesting when they're standing off to the side. That's not what trapeze artists do, is it? People pay to see them swing and tumble. She's swinging, alright. For all the aspiring trapeze artists out there, now you know where to go.

Wow, that's the closest that I've ever been to a navy ship (and I don't mean standing near the television screen) ;)
Some plane that I'm sure flies very fast!
My, my! When you see those up in the air you have no clue, do you?
I can't tell you enough how relieved I turned out to be for our tour bus not looking like this one. Just as we had arrived at the place where our tour was supposed to start we saw a few of these driving by - in the rain :( And although everyone seemed to have a little capped raincoat on, the wind still blew the rain in their face and leaking into every opening. At first I thought how glad I was that I took the advice to bring my umbrella, but the wind would have blown that idea right out of the water. They might have been high but they were certainly not dry. On a sunny day though, I'm sure that you get really awesome photographs from a bus like this one.

The one other thing that I'm thinking about as I'm writing this is how a bus of this size seems to be able to carry more tourists, which means larger groups, which means it is more impersonal, more difficult to get around the tour guide to hear all the interesting tidbits as you go along, and probably takes more time to get everyone on and off the bus wherever you get to explore on foot a bit. No, I'm glad we had exactly what we did.
Back at Time Square, only this time the lighting is much better now that the sun is out. This was just after 6pm. Notice all the pedestrians. It almost seemed like people crawled out of their "holes" once the rain had stopped. And I'm sure it had something to do with it being time for dinner after a long day at work. If you were going to find a nice spot, now was the time to do it.
Look! The Disney store! (All of the electronic media definitely adds to the vibe on the street.)
A bit of a crowded sidewalk to sit on but a very nice spot to walk.
This was a beautiful afternoon indeed.
Ooh, spot the tourist? ha-ha (See what I mean about all the electronic advertising and media? Very colorful and very vibrant. I would have loved to see New York at night.)
Now this is one of my favorites! We were walking along the sidewalk when we saw a large group of people looking over us to the left and pointing and taking pictures of something. As we turned to see what they were 'on' about this is what we saw. This is a very large flat screen TV if you will. It is a combination of the display for a surveillance camera as well as an electronic billboard. The advertisements basically run over the backdrop of the surveillance camera. How cool is that?!
Now look a little bit closer... Do you see it?
This is the upper part of the Time Square building. More recently the building hasn't had any tenants, except for an occasional one on the retail floors, but otherwise it would cost too much to equip the building with air conditioning, and besides, the building earn more income with advertising than it would if it was filled with tenants. You can imagine that an advertisement on this building must cost a pretty penny.

This building - as the Time Square headquarters - was opened with fireworks on 1 January 1907 and since then the new years celebration has continued annually with the drop of the ball each new years eve. 
Speaking of time... then it was time for dinner and John's Pizzeria came highly recommended, compliments of our tour guide.

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