For a starter, we all know how terrible the traffic in New York is. Well, that is true. In fact people would rather walk than be stuck in traffic. However, for someone who has lived in a place where traffic is horrendous like the Philippines, it really is not a big deal. What makes it worse is the people who does not mind crossing the street even if the light turns green. It is so upsetting that you can't even honk your horn at them or try to pretend you are going to run over them just so they would hurry up or try not to continue crossing the street because doing such is against the law.
Next is Time Square. I'm sure everybody knows this place is lined not only with big screens but with shopping centers like Forever 21, Disney Store, and so much more. It looks so good in movies that almost everyone would want to go there but do not be deceived by what you see in the big screen. In reality, it is too crowded and full of trash like the ones you see in Divisoria. The place stinks, it smells like pee. It is nowhere different from the stinky smell of Quiapo and Binondo. My son even quipped "New York City stinks!!" as we were walking to find our way to Central Park.
Speaking of Central Park, I know most of you are familiar with a scene in a romantic movie wherein one of the main characters is sitting on a bench while watching people passing by or for those of you who had watched "Bride Wars" there was a scene where Kate Hudson was jogging, that was shot in Central Park. There are a lot of play areas for kids scattered all throughout the park where children can climb wall, play in the slide, make sand castles in the huge sandbox, or just get themselves wet in the sprinklers. For the not very young ones, you could just sit on a bench and read a book or simply look at the passersby. If you're lucky, you could chance upon some celebrities strolling in the park. However, this place is not as clean as I envisioned it to be and the play areas are jampacked during weekends.
Of course an entry about New York will never be complete without mentioning the Statue of Liberty. Yes, we had a chance to meet Lady Liberty via a ferry ride from the New Jesrsey side. Before going to Liberty Island, we had a short stop at Ellis Island which we learned was the place where the first immigrants were brought to be examined by medical practitioners. Based on a documentary we watched, these immigrants were thoroughly tested/examined for any kind of illness, including lice on their head. The healthy ones were given their certificate which was somewhat similar to what we now call "green card". The not so healthy ones were quarantined until such time they were disease-free and the not-so-lucky ones on the other hand were sent back to where they came from. In the Liberty Island, one has an opportunity to go to Lady Liberty's Crown and view the New York City skyline. We did not bother going to the crown because I am a bit claustrophobic so we just found contentment taking pictures of ourselves at the base of the statue.
We had a not so good experience staying in New York City because one of our tires was slashed by some scumbag while parked in front of the hotel so we promised not to set foot in that city again. Besides, there are other places worth visiting than that over crowded and smelly city. If there was one thing that put a smile in our face worth mentioning, that would definitely be Jollibee :)
The infamous Jollibee ChickenJoy