At the start of week 4, the weatherforecast predicted a big snowstorm to hit the city. When the storm finally arrived we were disappointed. The term snowstorm actually brought much more fatalistic pictures to our minds than the storm was able to deliver in the end. It was just a snowy day. Nevertheless, we needed to stay at home the whole day as we didn’t bring winter clothes to New York.
One day, Lê had an appointment scheduled close the UN. The three of us took the subway to Grand Central Station and then let Mommy go to perform her duties. My first goal of the day was to discover Grand Central which we only had passed by subway until then. So I made my stroller-friedly(!) way from the lower subway levels to the ground floor of the station.
The most famous thing about Grand Central is probably the Main Concourse. Its characteristics are many nostalgic ticket counters, two large balconies located on opposite sites and a four-faced clock on an information booth placed in the center of the room. Visitors who raise their heads find the ceiling that shows an astromomically inspired theme.
I spent some time cruising around with camera and stroller to capture the swarm of people that rushed through the concourse. One of the mentioned balconies is home to another attraction: the Apple Store. Even more people than those rushing through the station jostle between station walls, pillars, stairs and iPhone presentation desks.
The main entrance of Grand Central Station faces East 42nd Street and is literally trapped by skyscrapers so that it’s not possible to gain a view of the entire station building anymore.
Very close by, the Chrysler Building rises. Built in the 1920’s this steel-made colossus was once the highest building on the planet until, two years after its completion, it got outrun by the Empire State Building. Public visitors can enter the Chrysler Building through entrances that can be best described as portals whose access is controlled by two revolving doors. (FYI: Stroller daddies can take an unremarkable and windy doorway to access without being crushed in the revolving doors.)
The lobby on the ground floor of the Chrysler Building looks amazing and it’s worth to have the courage to just enter. Unfortunately, it was so dark in there that none of the photos I took made its way through my photo selection pipeline. Sorry! (I’ll possibly retry some day in the future.)
On our way back home that day, Lê got attracted by a group of dancers who were about to start their performance at Times Square at dawn. She expected a promising break dance experience. After the guys filibustered the show several times by making silly jokes they truly started to break dance for a minute, just to stop again and pull in some poor people (incl. me) from the crowd to join the next part of the show.
At first, it seemed they just wanted to do a little stunt that included one of them jumping over the group of chosen people. The prelude again took some time and ended up with collecting tips from the crowd (that had massively grown meanwhile) and ransom from the selected people. In the end, one of the “dancers” jumped over some of the people… and this was it. Disappointed about the time we lost there, I deleted all the photos and videos I had made during the beginning of that performance.
So just be warned! Don’t watch dubious break dancers at Times Square! Your lifetime is worth more than that.
Another day, I took a little baby&daddy trip to Ground Zero in the very south of Manhattan. Two large pools take the spots where the 9⁄11 attacks detroyed the two World Trade Center Towers and strongly shifted the dynamics of world politics. Right behind those pools the highest building of the United States rises: the One World Trade Center.
In view of the hundreds or even thousands of tourists on site, this place isn’t just a memorial for the victims but also a big tourist attraction. For a fistful of dollars visitors can go up the observatory platform of the OneWTC… but that time, I stayed on the safe ground.