Thursday, January 28, 2010

More From New York City

So you thought I'd shown and told all there was to tell about our trip to New York City? Nope. There were very few unoccupied seconds of the day where we weren't on the way to or from something or another, unless it was when we were sleeping in our ultra comfy bed (must find out what kind of mattress that was!), or sitting in a Broadway theater.

Let's see...what did I leave out of the other posts?

On Thursday, after we attended the taping of The Martha Stewart Show, we took the subway to South Ferry and after a trip to Staten Island, we walked to Ground Zero and Trinity Episcopal Church and St. Paul's Chapel.


St. Paul's Chapel, across from the World Trade Center buildings, amazingly suffered almost no damage from the explosions. (One window cracked.)

Graveyard of St. Paul's Chapel

The Chapel is Manhattan's oldest public building still in continuous use, built in 1766, and is a part of Trinity Episcopal Church parish. George Washington worshiped here on his inauguration day in 1789.  During the aftermath of 9/11, the chapel served as a place of rest for rescue workers and now houses a memorial to those lost and the rescue workers.

Scuffs on the church pews have been left as a tribute to the rescue workers who made them with their boots and coats as they rested.

"Thank you for saving people."
Many have left their works of appreciation for those who worked so tirelessly.

Patches from Fire Departments across the country

Trinity Episcopal Church

Trinity Episcopal Church sanctuary

Alexander Hamilton (R) and Robert Fulton (L) are both interred in Trinity Church's cemetery.

A giant Sycamore tree once stood by St. Paul's Chapel, and was felled during the 9/11 explosions.  It's thought that the tree protected both the chapel and the graveyard, since both suffered very little damage, unlike everything around them.  Steve Tobin took what was left of the tree - the stump and its roots - and created a bronze sculpture which now sits in the courtyard of Trinity Church.

Artist Jessica Stamen used steel from the wreckage of the World Trade Center to fashion "The Chalice," depicting God's hands holding a cup atop two beams (Twin Towers) with roots of a tree at its base (the Sycamore tree).

The Chalice

While a visit to the site of the crash of Flight 93 in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, a few years ago moved Mom and me to tears, strangely, seeing the site where the World Trade Center buildings once stood did not do this.

Ground Zero, as seen from the second floor of Brooks Brothers

I almost felt guilty, and searched my soul to figure out why it didn't.  Perhaps enough time has passed for me, as one who was not directly affected by it, that the initial horror and sorrow have given way to a feeling of sympathy and appreciation for those that were.

What I did feel was more of a realization of how real and horrific it must have been to be on the street  and experience the sounds, sights, and smells of the events of that tragic morning. It could just as easily have been Mom and me playing tourist that day in 2001, rather than 2010.  I thought about those who worked and lived nearby and what fear they must have felt, not knowing what or why it was happening.

Liberty Plaza Park with Ground Zero in the background

"Red Cube" by Isamu Noguchi in the Financial District, is 24 feet tall.

Across the street from "Red Cube,"  in Liberty Park Plaza, is "Joie de Vivre" by Mark di Suvero

While I wasn't all that thrilled about going to a Broadway show before we'd left for New York, we planned to see one and decided we should see the longest running show on Broadway, The Phantom of the Opera. We got seats in the center of the seventh row, but there likely aren't any bad seats in the Majestic Theater.

I was so taken with every aspect of it - staging, costuming, vocals, orchestra - that when Mom suggested we see a second show, I agreed.  We tried to get tickets for A Little Night Music with Angela Lansbury and Catherine Zeta-Jones, but it was sold out.  Same thing with Wicked. But Mary Poppins had great seats in the center of the eighth row of the New Amsterdam Theater.

I'm hooked. If I ever get back to New York City, I'll definitely see another Broadway show.

So let's see...what's left? Oh, yes - the Empire State Building.  We went up there on Saturday, which was a perfect day for seeing the sights from the 86th floor.  For an additional fee, you can go on up to the 102nd, but we opted out of that.

The Empire State Building is located at the corner of 5th Avenue and 34th Street, just down the street from the original Macy's store

View of the Hudson River and off in the distance, Central Park

Looking down...

It was the place to be on a Saturday morning

The fencing was put up in 1947, following five suicides over a period of three weeks.

View of the East River, looking southeast

 Smiles all around! :-)

The building is legendary and the Art Deco style is everywhere you look.  There is a large aluminum relief of the building on one wall of the three-story lobby.

So here's the final tally of our activities while in New York City, in the order in which we did them:

I'm not sure we could have fit much more into our three-and-a-half days than that.  We both had such a marvelous time and were blessed with nearly perfect January weather.  Both of us would love to return in the summer and do a "garden tour" of New York Botanical Gardens and Brooklyn Botanical Gardens, along with Central Park and other attractions we missed this time around.

So many people have said to me, "I love New York!" and now I know why.


kate smudges said...

What fun it must have been for you and your mum to visit New York City. Your posts were fun to read. The Martha set must have been something else to visit. Lucky you!!

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Whew, you didn't leave much time unused on this trip. What a great experience.

Melody said...

Wow - you two got a lot done. I would have been the same way - a once in alifetime experience!

Anonymous said...

I love the story of the scuff marks on the church pew. Very cool - thanks for posting that. (Also the little woman at the information desk below the GRAND art - funny!)

Though I'm sure it happens a bit more in NYC (esp post-9/11), I always appreciate when I see others appreciating Fire/Police workers. The military gets a lot of love and rightly so, but people forget that the police have to strap on a bullet proof vest EVERY DAY. And instead of respect, people tend to think they're always corrupt or will share a story of a jerk cop with you. They deserve respect, too!

Anyway, love the pics and glad you enjoyed NYC. Have you visited DC yet?

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