Monday, May 21, 2007

New York City - Part 1

20 May 07 - 2230h


Left Ottawa on another dinky little American Eagle jet, had an easy changeover in Chicago on to something a bit bigger & more comfortable. Unfortunately the cloud cover thwarted what I'm sure would have been awesome views of the city on approach. The cab ride into Manhattan from La Guardia was equally uneventful; I got a quick introduction to the city as we drove through Spanish Harlem. Checked into the hostel & crashed out after sorting out a screw-up with my booking (They had me booked for 3 nights rather than 9. Wasn't looking forward to hotel hunting, but it turned out that the dimwit who'd taken my updated booking hadn't deleted the original shorter booking).


Up early to dive into the city. Passed on the 10km walk someone at the hostel was getting people into (local news reported that 22,000 participated) in favour of catching up with posts (London Part 2) and negotiating the subway system to get myself over to Astoria for the New York on Location event at the Museum of the Moving Image that I'd read about in the Village Voice. They had all of the trailers a location shoot would have open to look through and a full crew to talk to. Also outside they had a bunch of make-up/sfx and stunt demos - you would have loved it Pat. Inside there were demos of film and sound editing, and a video game installation that'd have Ash weeping with joy; so many systems with so many games.

After a few hours exploring the exhibitions and location trailers, and spending a bunch of cash on NYC film books, I got the subway back to Manhattan. Jumped off the R line at 42nd St and walked up into Time Square. OMFG, what a monument to consumerism. Massive video screens looming over massive stores, all enticing me to spend with their hypnotic pulsating neon glow. Must return one night to witness it in its full glowing glory. While I was there I maxed out the moment by going into McDonald's & having a Big Mac & a cheeseburger while looking out over 7th Ave & W 46th St.

In the midst of all of the hustle & bustle of Time Square, I was interviewed by Eric, a guy who said he was running for President. He didn't mention his candidacy right away of course; he started by asking me what I'd ask someone to do if that person said they could do almost anything. That stumped me. When he mentioned the Presidency, I looked around & told him to get people out of cars, make all the public transport in the country free. Apparently I was the first person to suggest that one. He then dropped to the micro scale & asked me what domestic chores he could do for me. I nominated dusting, for I loathe it the most.

Negotiated more of the city in the rain & got back to the hostel just in time to see the overtime period in the Ducks v Red Wings game. With Anaheim and Detroit tied at 1 - 1, the hockey played in the last period was the fastest & most intense I think I've ever seen. The Ducks took game 5, pushing the western conference playoff to 3-2. Tuesday's game should be awesome with the Ducks given the opportunity to eliminate the Red Wings, or with Detroit given another life line depending on how you look at it. Finally got the result of yesterday's game too; the Senators took the eastern conference while I was flying.

Impressions of NYC so far:
- noisy: horns constantly & sirens at all hours
- dirty: saw a real live NYC rat in the subway & downtown is grotty
- buzzing: seems to be something for everyone here

Looking forward to:
- catching up with my cousin here
- Empire State Building
- a Yankees game
- walking/riding through Central Park
- Spring weather breaking through the rain
- a comedy night in the hostel, then a few at real comedy clubs
- a pub crawl from the hostel
- walking the Brooklyn Bridge


Posted by Dean @ 5/21/2007 12:29:00 pm

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Glad you're having an ace time travelling. We're following your tales with interest!

Posted by Anonymous Anonymous @ Monday, May 21, 2007 8:04:00 pm #
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