Posted by: capitalgirl | October 31, 2009

On The Town

Okay, so I stink at posting regularly. That’s okay – I’ll just embrace it.

GUYS. I WENT TO NEW YORK. My dear friend B. was in NYC before heading off to an event elsewhere, so I decided to pop up and see him. He got in to town at 7 pm-ish, and his train left the next day at 7:30 pm, so he had basically 24 hours in town to see as much as possible.

Hmm. This scenario reminds me of something …

What do you know. Apparently B. and I are secretly Frank Sinatra and Gene Kelly dressed as sailors. (I TOTALLY CALL BEING GENE KELLY.)

Anyways, this is all neither here nor there. The exciting part is all the stuff we saw! As soon as we got checked into the hostel (which was super-cheap, but also was apparently shared with a resident of the rodent variety!!!) we headed off to a diner. After our delicious but late dinner, we grabbed a cab to the Empire State Building. Naturally, it was miserable and cloudy, so there was no point in going up to the top, but we admired the lovely Art Deco lobby and took some pictures. From there, off to Grand Central Station! Holy crap is that place ever ginormous. The ceiling is huge and fantastic and blue, painted with constellations. It is all very neat.

After Grand Central, we accidentally walked to the UN. I say accidentally because we were trying to get to Times Square, but for some reason I was navigating so naturally we ended up in the opposite direction. Anyways, we admired the UN, then turned around and walked back up to Times Square. Guys, Times Square will screw with your head if you go late at night. By the time we got there it was pretty much midnight, but it is so bright! It looked like the middle of the day! And of course there were tourists running around everywhere, so again, it didn’t feel like night time.

Our night did not end there! After Times Square, we boogied on down to the Financial District. We saw the World Trade Center site, Trinity Church (which is quite lovely, though the cemetary beside it is a little creepy in the dark), the New York Stock Exchange, the big ol’ bull statue, and the spot where Washington was inaugurated, way back in the day. It turns out that going to see the bull statue at 2 am is actually a super-excellent idea: there is no one around, so you can spend as much time as you’d like getting silly-looking photos, and also there will be no boring tourists in the background of your photo.

After that, we decided to go to bed. You will note that by now, we have already managed to see LOTS. Apparently it is possible to fit mad tourism into less than 6 hours.

Next morning, we were up bright and early at 8:10 am. We boogied back to Penn Station to drop off B.’s luggage. Excellent tip – Penn Station has luggage storage at $4.50 per bag if you are travelling via train. From there, we ran to go pick up our bus tour tickets. Bus tour – totally awesome, minus the FREEZING POURING RAIN. Turns out that open top buses are not designed for rain. Still, it was pretty neat. We saw loads on the tour – the Flatiron building, the Woolworth building, the big button thingy in the Fashion district, lots of other things that are slipping my mind right now. Anyways, we hopped off the bus in Battery park, hoping to grab a glimpse of the Statue of Liberty.

Remember that miserable rain I mentioned? The Statue of Liberty looked like a grey outline on a slightly lighter grey background. Slightly anti-climatic.

For lunch we popped up to the Rockefeller Center. We got some absolutely delicious cupcakes at a teeny little bakery right nearby on the recommendation of B.’s girlfriend. Dear B.’s girlfriend: You have most excellent taste in cupcakes. KUDOS. We didn’t have time to see much of the Center, but we did take a look in the NBC gift shop and take pictures with the NBC Studio sign outside. It was pretty awesome.

After that, we went to see “Hair”.

GUYS. Many of you likely know that I am a big, big fan of the musicals. When I was last in New York, I saw “Phantom of the Opera” and “Chicago” (plus “Altar Boyz”, an excellent off-Broadway show). I saw “Mamma Mia” when it was in Toronto, I saw “We Will Rock You: The Musical” in London, I saw “Jersey Boys” when my parents came down to visit me a couple of weeks ago. Not to mention my deep and abiding love for movie musicals. I feel as though I have some relevant context when I say the following words:


Seriously!! I am not at all kidding or exagerrating. Watch this video of the cast (THE SAME CAST I SAW ON BROADWAY BECAUSE LIFE IS AWESOME) performing at the Tony’s.

You see the part where the cast is running around the theatre like crazy people? B. ended up with a cast member’s head in his lap midway through the performance. During the big finale, I helped a cast member make his way to the back of the theatre stepping only on the backs of audience seats. By about halfway through the show I had a daisy in my hair. Heck, B. got up and danced on the stage near the end. The whole thing was incredible. The music was fantastic, the acting was excellent, the dancing was dead-on, the whole thing was crafted brilliantly. And, oh my God, was it ever fun. (It helped that our seats were about eight rows from the front, dead centre. Did I mention we got the tickets on sale the day before? Yeah.) If you ever get the chance, GO SEE THIS SHOW. Oh, but don’t go see this show if you have problems with people getting naked on stage or pretending to do the drugs. Because those are things that happen. On the other hand, if that’s particularly worrisome for you, maybe you wouldn’t enjoy it as much as I did, so maybe only go see this show if you are cool and awesome. Otherwise … well, “Mary Poppins” is back on Broadway, I guess.

Anyways, after said show, we boogied back down to the UN to try to make it in time for the last tour. Sadly, we missed it by about 15 minutes. 😦 We then boogied back up to Fifth Ave, wandered around looking in the stores, and then grabbed some dinner before heading back to Penn Station to go to our respective destinations.

I’m pretty sure that is what one might call “a busy day”.





  1. I love New York!

    But… huge musical fan though I am, that clip just convinced me to never see Hair.

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