‘The city that never sleeps…’
Look, I know it’s an incredibly over-used phrase, but honestly, it suits NYC to a T. Everywhere the streets are bustling with people; some hurrying to offices in starchy suits and whacking people with their briefcases, some wandering aimlessly past sparkling shop windows and gazing up in awe at the towering buildings, and some simply sitting…and watching.
That was one of my favourite things to do. Yes, all the history and architecture is interesting enough, but the real essence of the city lies in the people that reside there, living their lives at 100 miles an hour every day. Thus, people-watching soon became one of my favourite pastimes.
However, I would be lying if I tried to say I didn’t enjoy all the typical touristy things. Wherever I go, I always set out to do both the ‘highlights’ and explore the more unusual areas, because at the end of the day, such attractions are sublimely famous for a reason.
The ferry to Liberty Island, although it left me leaving the boat feeling rather windswept and unsteady on my feet, gave a superb view of Manhattan, and I could really see just how the One World Trade Center dwarfed every other building on the island.
I thought it rather astonishing; firstly the resilience of the city to rebuild what had been so cruelly destroyed on 9/11, but also the incredible bravery to make the new building almost 400 metres higher than before- a bold statement indeed.
I don’t think I truly comprehended the importance of the Statue of Liberty before I stood at her feet. The sun circled her crown like a halo, and showed her true magnificence to all: the perfect symbol of hope. I, too, hope that America continues with her vow of Liberty in this darker time in her history. Perhaps if her inhabitants care to gaze upon Lady Liberty, they will embrace one another and strive for a different, more accepting future.