Daily Archives: December 29, 2019

Sunday Dec 8th in NYC . . .

Today we were all up and down Manhattan Island, and that included TWO boat rides.

After breakfast at our hotel, we Ubered down to the 9/11 World Trade Center site, now called One World Trade Center, or the Freedom Tower.

1WTC- Building

When we were here in 2009 it was all pretty much just a big hole in the ground, only visible by looking through peepholes in a tall fence. But now it’s all finished.

The former footprints of the Twin Towers are now marked by reflecting pools,


surrounded by a border marking the names of the 3000+ people killed on 9/11.


Off to the side we could see some of the many old buildings that miraculously survived the Twin Tower’s collapse.

1WTC- St Pauls Chapel

We had planned to do the 9/11 Museum, but found there was a two hour wait to get in, so since we had firm plans for later in the day, we decided to save it for our next visit to NYC. So our next stop was the Oculus, the entrance to the subway system underneath One World Center, combined with a shopping mall.


The building design is said to symbolize a dove with clipped wings.

And the inside is just as amazing.

1WTC- Oculus Inside

We spent some time walking around inside checking out all the shops on the several levels. While we we on the lower level, we noticed the subway stop and realized we could take the subway directly to our next planned stop, the Staten Island Ferry terminal.

And rather than the $20-$30 Uber ride we had planned, we could ride the subway there for 2 $3.00 Single Ride passes. So after walking around a little more we bought our passes from the ticket machine and off we went.

It was only about 20 minutes later when we were walking into the Ferry terminal, and luckily for us, right on to the next ferry. We had already done Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty when we were here in 2009, so our plan was to ride the ferry over and back, just for the views.

Going over, we passed Ellis Island, once the nation’s busiest immigration inspection station from 1892 to 1954, processing over 12 million immigrants during that time.

Staten Island Ferry - Ellis Island

Then it was on pass the Statue of Liberty, with some more great views.

Staten Island Ferry - Statue of Liberty

Staten Island Ferry - Statue of Liberty 1

And looking back toward the city, we got a couple of great shots of the New York skyline,

Staten Island Ferry - NYC Skyline

and the Freedom Tower.

Staten Island Ferry - 1WTC

When we got to Staten Island, we had planned to just stay on board and ride the same ferry back, but had to disembark because the crew were taking their lunch break.

But in about 45 minutes we were on our way back on another ferry.

We had next planned to Uber up to Bryant Park, near Rockefeller Center, so Jan could check out the Christmas Market that was set up in one end of the park. But noticed that taking the same subway train back in the opposite direction would drop us off just a couple of blocks from the Park. And for just 2 more $3 passes. Nice!

Bryant Park - 1

Jan found a number of Christmas gifts as we made the rounds, including some unique one of a kind items.

Bryant Park - 2

And we finally got to see snow in NYC. Tucked off over in a shady corner was this.

Bryant Park - Snow

Finishing up, we decided to Uber back to our hotel since we had already done so much walking, almost 5 miles total, according to Jan’s Fitbit. Plus we only had a couple of hours to get dressed and down to the Chelsea Pier area for our Bateaux Holiday Lights Dinner Cruise.

Bateau Cruise - 1

We had paid extra for a window table, but looking at some of the online photos I was afraid we might be at a table with other couples, but no, we had our own table with a great view, and a beautiful lady waiting for me.

Bateau Cruise - Window Table

The table was elegantly set, and strewn with rose petals, which turned out to be special for us, because I had listed this as an anniversary cruise for us, which it was, but just a couple of months late.

Bateau Cruise - Table Setting

The ship looked to be  almost completely full, with everyone having a good time.

Bateau Cruise - Room

The menu was much like our recent Viking River Cruise with several choices each for an appetizer, entrée, and a dessert.

After we ordered our meal, I saw a drink that I thought Jan might like on the menu, so I ordered us two Poinsettias.

Bateau Cruise - Poinsettia

Made with Champagne, Cointreau, and Cranberry Juice, they proved to be pretty potent. Much more so than most of the restaurant drinks we normally get around here.

Bateau Cruise - Room 2

Our meal was delicious and to top it off, toward the end of our meal, the hostess brought out a bouquet of red roses for Jan, also in celebration for our anniversary.

Bateau Cruise - Roses

Along the way we got some great views of the NYC skyline,

Bateau Cruise - Skyline

And a really close-up view of the Statue of Liberty.

Bateau Cruise - Statue of Liberty

To make sure that everyone gets a fantastic show, the captain stations the ship as close as he’s allowed to get to the Statue, and then uses his bow and stern thrusters to just rotate in place, I think about 4 times around.

Bateau Cruise - Statue of Liberty 2

Finishing up our 3 hour cruise, yes, I know, I had expected to have a problem getting a Uber to come down into the dock area since it’s a roundabout way and there’s a fee. But an enterprising gypsy cab was waiting at the dock, looking for customers. And his fee to take us back to our hotel was less than our Uber ride there.

Tomorrow, Monday the 9th of December, will be our last full day in NYC, and we’ll be visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art (The Met) and also Serendipity, a restauarant that Jan’s really looking forward to.

Stay tuned.

Thought For The Day:

“There is all the difference in the world between treating people equally, and attempting to make them equal.” – Frederich Hayek