We spent the majority of our Saturday in New York standing and walking around the city. To say that we were tired at the end of the day is an understatement! But we saw so much and had a wonderful time, so it's hard to complain.
Grand Central Station
We became experts at the subway system while we were there. Okay, maybe not so much. We had to ask some people for advice on how to get to such and such a place once or twice, but for our first time taking public transit on such a large scale, I think we did pretty well.
Immediately inside Grand Central.
There was a space like this to the left and right of the area in the picture above. I think you can rent this hall out for events. Can you imagine a wedding reception there? I don't know the price, but I'm sure it would be out of our budget!
And this is [a small part of] the main area of Grand Central. The terminals for all of the subways are off of the hallways and down a flight of stairs or two (or five!).
The subways had a variety of smells, none of them pleasant. Urine, fish, crotch...
After taking the subway down to Battery Park, we bought our tickets for the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. We didn't buy tickets ahead of time and saw on the website that they have a limited number of tickets to buy the day-of. We weren't sure we'd even be able to get tickets to get into the monument, but we did get there in time for those. We were informed, however, that tickets to climb up to the crown are sold out through September!
While in the [very long] security line for the Statue, we saw this memorial in the harbor for the Merchant Marines. Pop, my grandfather on my Dad's side, was in the Merchant Marines, so it was neat to see this.
The view of the Statue and Ellis Island across the harbor.
A view of the city as we took off to Liberty Island.
This is the security line we stood in to get onto the boat. We had to go through security once again when we entered the monument.
A view of the city. I've seen pictures of it and even looked at Manhattan on google maps, but you just can't get a feel for how BIG this city is until you're there. As I flew in on Friday, it was as if the pilot was doing his best to give me a great view of the city. Each block of the city has huge buildings right next to each other, and then the blocks just keep going on and on. It was incredible to see!
Lady Liberty herself. Something else I've seen tons of pictures of, but just did not realize the size of until I saw it in person.
A torch of years past. Retired in 1986 (I think??).
Her face is an entire story tall.
Looking up her robe from the top of the pedestal upon which she stands.
I look like I'm about to fall.
My lunch. Southwest chicken panini with fries. Fries were good. Panini was good. Would have probably been better if it were fresh or at least hot.
Then we hopped on the boat and cruised over to Ellis Island. It was pretty incredible.
These are some of the trunks and luggage that were brought with some immigrants. Not sure if the immigrants just decided they didn't need them anymore or if they were donated or what. But anyway.
"You can't come in. The quota for 1620 is full." After a few years of having so many immigrants come in, there were limits put in place to control how many people came in and from where (some countries that weren't as friendly with ours had lower quotas).
We read some journal entries and one of them talked about the voyage across the Atlantic. It mentioned a baby being born on the ship. I cannot even imagine! Some of these people were coming across in the dead of winter, so to deliver at that time in a place with no heat and and no clean hospital... it blows my mind and makes me grateful for modern healthcare, as expensive as it is!
"How do you spell your name?"
After Ellis Island we walked around the financial district for a bit. We may or may not have taken a wrong turn or two while we were there, but we just chalk it up to seeing more of the city.
This is Trinity Church, the one in National Treasure with the underground lair that contained lots of treasure. Remember it? I loved those movies. I've heard rumors of a third one coming out this Christmas!
Aren't these windows beautiful?!
Some of the gravestones were marked in the 1700s. It was burned in the fire of 1776 when the British seized non-Anglican churches and used them as prisons and barracks. We think that's why some of the tombstones were brown and falling apart and others were just algaefied. Some of the ones that were burned looked like they would fall apart if they were touched. Source
New York Stock Exchange. We were there on Saturday so it was closed. Otherwise we would have been in the thick of it yelling, "Buy! Sell!" We would have fit right in.
And this... this is the most wonderful place on earth! Tiffany & Co.!
This isn't the original store, it's the one on Wall Street. We weren't planning to go into this store, but we happened past it and the sparkles lured us (read: me) in. The architecture of the interior is just amazing! Marble staircase, beautiful columns... It was gorgeous! The displays and cabinets and things looked a little dated, but I think that's the modern look (that I'm not a huge fan of) they were going for. Do you see those things floating from the ceiling? They had sparkles and jewels all over them so when you walked into the store all you saw above you was bling. Even if you don't buy anything, it's such a fun place to wander through!
After all the walking downtown we went to the hotel to change shoes. At least I did. Even my comfortable wedding day shoes were killing me by lunchtime. (Wedding day shoes are the most comfortable cute flats I can find that I wear when I'm coordinating a wedding. I haven't found a heel that's comfortable enough for me to wear all day and not be dying by the end of the night of a wedding.) We hopped on the subway and headed up to Central Park. One of the first things we saw was this bride.
Black feathers on her head with a gown that looks like lingerie with a poofy skirt. I know every person has their own style, but seriously?! This was just ridiculous. She had four photographers, a videographer, and a coordinator with her. This was the second of four brides we saw on Saturday. I'm guessing each of them had a huge budget to have a NYC wedding!
Metropolitan Museum of Art
The detail on the buildings is incredible. Faces and gargoyles looking down at you.
Where we got dinner on Saturday night. Good burgers!
RC Cola and Chocolate Soda! The chocolate soda tasted like carbonated Yoo-Hoo. Jared was a big fan!
And that was our Saturday! We were exhausted and wiped out, but again, it's kind of hard to complain when you're in NYC!