A city so nice they named it twice – Part III

After Central Park, we made our way to the One World Observatory which is just next to the WTC station. The majestic building rose high into the sky. A friend who was nearby called us and we decided to go up to the top most floor together. We purchased our tickets and made our way to the elevators. To say the elevator ride and the video that followed was simply superb, would be a major understatement. It would also be unfair to those who have not yet been there. It is surely a once in a lifetime trip and you will be not be left disappointed. After we reached the main observatory level, everybody removed their digital cameras and mobile phones and began snapping up the hypnotic view of the skyline. Manhattan, Brooklyn, New Jersey, and the Liberty Island all blended into one fantastic panoramic view which was a treat to the eyes. It was our luck that we reached WTC just before sunset. This way we saw the skyline during the sunlight and during the night too. We were so spellbound by the beauty that we lost all sense of time. But our growling tummies finally outweighed our thoughts and we made our way back. We took the subway from the pristinely white and amazing looking WTC station.

We got down at Journal Square and joined by Sanket we made our way to the Indian street located a couple of blocks away. Since most of the restaurants were closed we entered the first open one we saw. It was a typical Indian restaurant complete with Indian music playing on the TV. We ordered 2 sabzis and naans and devoured it. While making our way back to the house, we passed Apna Bazaar, DMart and Spice Bazar. The street was littered with pan shops. It was amusing to see a part of the United States had a resemblance to the local streets of India. Finally, we reached the apartment. I showered, changed into comfortable clothes and hit the sack like a dead log.

Next day dawned at noon for all of us. We then got ready and made our way to the 9/11 memorial. It was quite peaceful to look at and we took a lot of pics. Our group then split up based on the food preferences and we decided to meet up at the same place again after our meals. Lunch was quite uneventful and after regrouping we chose to see the Wall Street and the Bull. After some help from Google maps, we finally saw the big sculpture of the Bull but gave up any faint idea of going near it since it was buzzing with people. After resorting to taking pics from afar, we entirely dumped the idea and walked to Battery Park which was close by. From here we headed over to the Trump building and the New York Stock Exchange. People were aimlessly walking around clicking pics with their kin, oblivious to other passers-by who shot condescending looks at them for taking up photogenic places. We too got bored after excitedly taking some pictures and decided to go see the Brooklyn Bridge next.

With tired limbs, we wended our way to the Brooklyn Bridge. And just like all previous stops, it was crowded. I guess that’s why they say that you can never find a quiet spot in New York. Almost everyone held an image capturing device in his/her hand. From the opposite side, people cycled precariously, dodging the incoming people who were lost in looking at the world through the screen in front of them. The skyline seemed majestic behind us as we made our way across the bridge to the other side. And luckily for us, we came at the right time again since we got to see the skyline in the day as well as with the lights on. It was spectacular, to say the least, and one lost the sense of time gazing at the skyline, mesmerized by its appeal and charm.

After 3 hours, we finally made our way back. This time though Sanket was with us and he suggested that we try the Indian cuisine from a food truck near the WTC station. I was more than happy since I anyway wanted to eat from a food truck. Others didn’t mind and so we followed Sanket to the food truck he mentioned. The food truck we approached was no different from the many others surrounding it (some even had the same graphics and labels painted on the truck), but Sanket insisted that we try the food from that very truck. We ordered our meals and made our way across the road to a deserted seating area. It was completely silent except for the light flutter of the birds retiring for the night. As we dug into our scrumptious meals, everyone silently thanked Sanket for taking us to this specific food cart, because without him we would have chosen the first food truck we saw without batting an eyelid. The food was delicious. After everyone was done, Sanket suggested that we see the skyline from the New Jersey side. Even though we all were tired to our bones, we agreed since it was on the way and we did not have to take a detour for it.

We temporarily forgot our weariness when we approached the view. We were exactly opposite the New York skyline and the only thing separating us from the skyline was the river in front of us. At night, the New York skyline had a surreal feel to it and you simply could not peel your eyes off of it. I could have easily settled in comfortably on a chair and looked at the view for the entire night. Maybe I entertained these thoughts because I was too tired to walk anymore. Shortly after everyone was satisfied with the pics taken in their mobiles, we decided to head back home. We took an Uber for the short trip back to Sanket’s place. We freshened up and I was asleep even before the lights were turned off.



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