Faces and Spaces in New York City

It is a well known fact that my husband and I enjoy walking. Since arriving here in NYC  we have walked uptown, downtown, midtown and to an extent cross town here in Manhattan. We haven’t yet crossed the river, nor have we been to the Brooklyn Bridge.

Queueing up at food trucks during lunch break.
Queueing up at food trucks during lunch break.

My husband commented last night while we were eating in a cafe in downtown Greenwich that he felt as though he was in a Woody Allen movie. On one table a woman was telling her husband that he was moving towards insanity because of some decision he had taken, on another students were having tutoring – we are near New School and are surrounded by its different campuses. At the bar the girl serving was loud but entertaining and at every table it seemed as though a different scene was being played out.

Playing volley ball at Battery Point
Playing volley ball at Battery Point

We have walked through Noho, which is similar but not to be confused with the expensive and arty Soho which we found on our way to a diminishing Little Italy which is being encroached upon by Chinatown.  Our apartment is on the edge of Greenwich Village and so we head through here taking a different route each time to the Chelsea Markets and the Meatpacking District which appears to be in the process of being gentrified with lots of new swanky, but perhaps less affordable housing.

Battery Point is a popular lunch time destination
Battery Point is a popular lunch time destination

Battery Point was interesting. As we walked along the shores of the Hudson River we saw people using the facilities provided for volleyball, billboards, table tennis, basketball, skateboarding,learning to sail and so many well designed playgrounds for children of all ages. It was lunchtime so as we were being passed by joggers and power walkers we could see people using their break for a bit of exercise and recreation. It helped that the sun was shining on another beautiful Spring day.

Broadway
Broadway
Busy streets of Broadway
Busy streets of Broadway

One place, where we have been a couple of times to see shows, and where it is nearly impossible to walk because of the seething crowds, is Broadway. We don’t even walk here! We catch the subway to either Times Square or 49th Street and weave our way through or against the tide depending on where most people are going. Our tactic is to try to arrive a bit late so we avoid queueing up and the line has already started to move in to the show. There doesn’t appear to be much space where the audience can buy drinks and meet up before the show inside the theatres. Everyone lines up outside, then they are herded in to their seats and bags are inspected if they are bigger than your usual handbag. We also have noticed that not many people leave the auditoriums at interval. They stand up, stretch their legs and chat but they don’t move far from their seats. The ‘Water, wine, candy’ man walks around offering his wares and apart from the adware souvenir shop that’s all there is to offer.
We had a look at the dark gloomy tunnels made by the tall unfriendly looking buildings around Wall St before visiting the Memorial Site for 9/11. Gardeners, officials, electricians, computer people were all over the place getting ready for the visit of the President today to open the Museum. Even the fountains were not happening and there were men in waist-high Wellington boots vacuuming and sweeping out the reflection pools. It is an impressive memorial and the Museum will make it even more meaningful for those who visit, whatever their reason.

The entrance to the new 9/11 memorial Museum
The entrance to the new 9/11 memorial Museum
The reflection pools remind us of what was here and the lives that were lost.
The reflection pools remind us of what was here and the lives that were lost.

The rain is falling this morning. I wonder where we will wander today?

 

 

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