To describe the weekend in one word - whirlwind. We did so much, in such a short period of time, it is hard to remember.
3:00 AM - got up, dressed . . . and headed to our office parking lot, which was our meet up location - loaded the U-Haul
4:00 AM - left for New York
|It is pretty dark out at 4:00AM and the camera was too far away - but there we are - ready to hit the road!|
As I mentioned we had a conversion van and the back seat was comfy - here I am sprawled out, enjoying string cheese and crackers. YUM!
We had to come up with something clever to wear or display on our bike ride - so Thursday evening I searched the local Shopko and came up with this wedge of cheese with little mice. We just needed to figure out how we would attach them. We ended up simply stuffing them into our helmets. Many people realized that we were obviously from WI and there were several "hey cheese heads", while others were "what's with the cheese in your helmet". But during the drive, it is sometimes the simple things that bring the most laughs. ;-)
We drove and drove - stopping to fill the gas tank and stretch. In Pennsylvania we had a mission - remember we are from Wisconsin and enjoy a good beer. So we had to find a beer distributor near I-80 in Pennsylvania so that we could stop and pick up a case of Yuengling beer, which is America's oldest brewery. To be honest I am not much of a beer drinker - I like beer, but had never heard of Yuengling - but it sure did taste great on Friday evening.
7:00 PM - stopped at Stoudsburg, at a local drive-through distributor for a case of Yuengling beer and proceeded to have a beer (only 1 beer) in the parking lot - then back in the van.
After about another hour of driving we decided to stop at Rockaway NJ at the Best Western. We figured this would leave us less than an hour in the morning to get to New York.
8:30 PM ate a a local restaurant - the Exchange - we raved about the food, it was really good - we all had seafood dishes and a couple of pitchers of beer (Yuengling - of course) - but honestly, anything would have probably tasted good. Back at the hotel and sleeping around midnight.
6:30 AM up, ready to hit the road by 7:00 to drive to New York
|First photo opportunity of New York - Took the Holland tunnel into Manhattan.|
8:00 we hopped the ferry and headed to Liberty Island.
|Ken, Tricia, me, Nikki - and of course Lady Liberty|
|Then onto the ferry to Ellis Island|
|Ellis Island - we walked around and listened and read about the immigrants. We also commented about our conditions in the Conversion van on our trip to New York vs. what the immigrants must have experienced.|
|One last view of the Statue and skyline.|
The plan was now that Tricia and Scott would drop the van and trailer off at the hotel and then they were going to go to Central Park, while Ken, Nikki and I were going to Wall Street, World Trade Center site - the new Freedom Tower, and then Hobokan to see Carol's Cake Shop.
|New York Stock Exchange|
|Escalator to the Path - we had a hard time finding this - we were looking for the PATH at the subway stations near the Freedom Tower site - but it is a completely (or almost completely separate) station.|
|Carlo's Bake Shop, make famous by the show Cake Boss.|
We found a great bar / grill and stopped to have lunch. Chatted about the city, etc. with the waitress and then were on our way back to Manhattan via the PATH and then up to the hotel via the Subway.
|Jack, Sally, Ken, Scott, Nikki and Tricia. Grand Central Station is a beautiful building and just such a cool place.|
7:15 PM - took cab to Barrow St Theatre to see Mike Birbiglia's show titled: My Girlfriend's Boyfriend. Funny show.
9:30 - enjoyed some Gelato
10:00 - took subway up to Times Square - walked around and then headed back to hotel - 11:45
(we were there the night before Osama was killed - in my opinion, it is always crazy down there - but I can not even imagine what it must have been like on Sunday evening)
|A picture does not do Times Square justice!|
Sunday - The Ride
5:30 AM - up and head down to Scott's cousins apartment to pick up bikes via subway.
. . . . rest of the story tomorrow - now I must work on my mac book!