Grant and I hit the City running the day after getting our historical fix in Philly and we just kept running and running--well, actually walking. The very first day we walked from mid town (around 32nd) all the way uptown (not counting all the zig zags cross town) to Harlem (around 124th). In other words--we walked a hell of a long way! As I have noted before, NY blocks seem and are much bigger than the blocks most of us are used to--especially the blocks I grew up on in Portland, Or and Seattle.
Safe to say-- the days I am in the city, I don't have to worry about a cardio workout at the gym--I get plenty of exercise.

I had never been to Harlem, so it was a treat to take Grant up there and experience it for myself as well. On the way we visited some of the touristy spots that we missed when Grant was here before i.e. Rockefeller Skating Rink [Quote from Grant (and everyone else that has ever seen this rink] "Man, its small!!!!"); the NY Public Library, Bryant Park, Central Park, the Upper West Side (where I called Tom from a neat little restaurant and once again tried to convince him, but to no avail, that we should move there) and of course we visited the best Pubs we could find along the long walk -- shout out to The Pour House!!!

Once to Harlem, I noticed first hand the huge increase of building expansion that has been reported all over the news (real estate tip: buy now in Harlem if you have the $$). Its a gorgeous part of the city and near some pretty gorgeous landmarks including Columbia University and the 2nd largest place of religious worship in the WORLD, second only to St Peter's in Vatican City: The Cathedral of St. John the Divine.

This "church" and by using the term church I feel as I am doing a huge disservice to this gorgeous building/house of God, is breathtaking. Seeing it from the outside and knowing that no picture I could ever take with my camera would do it justice made me feel so small. This building is enormous and once entering inside, it felt like I was Jonah in the stomach of the whale--swallowed whole and just frozen--looking around in shock.

The inside covers more than half a city block, spanning a length of over 600' and over 200' high.
It was designed in 1888 and begun in 1892, but since has undergone radical design changes (not to mention the interruption of the two World Wars). It is still considered unfinished... but due to lack of funding and the recession--the restoration project that has been ongoing for decades has been halted... temporarily. The stained glass, tapestries and small chapels within the cathedral complete with gothic statues, small historical religious mementos with the organ music (which I have to admit seemed eerie) playing in the background gave us a very surreal feeling.

After day one in the city we headed home to tell Tom of all our stories and plan day 2 which consisted of more walking, more pubs and Brooklyn. It was a great day.

Here are some pictures!

Grant in front of the Bryant Park Skating rink



Grant at the Library. GHOSTBUSTERS!!!!



Grant at the John Lennon Imagine Memorial in Central Park



Some shots of the Cathedral




The Apollo Theatre

1 comments:

  1. Captain Key said...

    I'm pretty mad that you didn't take me to the Apollo! ha ha  

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