“One of the best things about living in a city like New York is leaving it.”
– Carrie Bradshaw, Sex and the City
I was recently in Boston, MA for a work event. The event wasn’t spectacular, but my time in Boston certainly was. I got to explore Harvard University, which was mind-boggling and generally just wander around in the historic architecture of the beautiful city.
Afterwards, I decided to tack on an extra leg and venture over to the city that never sleeps. I had visited Manhattan a few times before, but never on my own, and I was excited for the new adventure.
I arrived at Hotel St. James, which I booked on Groupon (holla if you’re ballin on a budget!), and was ecstatic to arrive just one block off of Times Square! Little did I know, Times Square is basically a dump. Who knew?
Upon unpacking, I noticed that I had lost a glove somewhere in transit and began my excursion to find a new one at the local REI. I wasn’t yet familiar with the subway system, so I mostly walked around the first day. This ended up being a mistake in hindsight; Manhattan is HUGE.
The city was so beautiful. Although my feet were killing my by lunch, my first day in New York was by far the most eventful. I began with the best bagel in the entire world from Black Seed, and got to enjoy Eataly, my new favorite place, once again. Hours later, I arrived at REI and my fingers were happy once again.
The next day, I wandered around Central Park and spent some time exploring Times square. Central Park was incredible, filled with beauty, art, and joy. I remembered it vaguely, but it was quieter this time; more peaceful.
Once I got back to the hotel, I got all dolled up and ready to head out to Times Square, another place I recalled from my memory. I remember the lights, the crowds, the hustle and bustle, and the overwhelming sense of being somewhere so iconic.
In reality, it was dirty, smelly, and filled with people who I was sure were going to pickpocket me, but I loved it all the same.
Day three was gym day. I took a two hour train ride over to Long Island and spent THREE HOURS working out at the East Coast Mecca, also known as Bev Francis Powerhouse Gym. The gym was huge, but not nearly as huge as the people working out there. I spent a few minutes chatting with Steve Weinberger and then saw Arash Rahbar who looked like a brick wall. I then spent another two hours on a train to get back to the hotel, but If you’re interested in bodybuilding in any capacity, this gym is a can’t miss attraction.
My final day in New York was spent at the American Museum of Natural History, a place that I wasn’t completely jazzed about, but am happy I visited nonetheless. It was huge and filled with, you guessed it, history. That being said, my trip to get there was more eventful than the actual museum itself.
A man hopped onto the subway and began preaching to the riders about the gospel. Now, I have nothing against religion until it’s thrust upon my against my will. He went on an on well past the designated stop and then all the way back up to the museum. He then followed me into the museum and met a friend where they continued to chat about how “God never could have created something so evil looking” in reference to some cool dinosaur photos. It was a great time.
All in all, my trip to New York was more iconic than actually enjoyable. Yes, of course I enjoyed being there and taking in all the sights, but is it somewhere that I’ll be rushing back to? Not anytime soon. This is, by no means, meant to deter you from visiting. In fact, I would highly visiting somewhere at least once in your life to experience how iconic everything feels, but I think once every few years is plenty.