Saturday, August 4, 2012

Day 6 - Touring NYC - Part III (Chinatown, World Trade Center Site, Wall Street, Statue of Liberty)

Heading into our second day in NYC, we decided to hit the subway for our destinations.  On the agenda for the first half of the day was Chinatown, Statue of Liberty, and the World Trade Center site.  Let me begin by saying that Chinatown on a Saturday was dumb.  It was definitely an experience... a very crowded experience!  Oh, well... live and learn!  It was still fun!
Heading underground for our first subway ride.

If we watch her, maybe we can figure this out.

Um, what if we push this button!

Finally some help from a homeless man who helps
tourists in hopes of getting to keep the change,
which he got to do!  We were very grateful!

At Grand Central Station waiting for Chinatown-bound train

All aboard!

Ducks in a row again.

Fish vendor!  Eeeewwwww!

More eeeeeewwwwww!

Cool-looking fruit!

We saw a lot of food vendors, but Emilee was on the lookout for some name brand knock-offs!  But first, it was still so hot, and we needed to find some lunch... preferably in an air-conditioned restaurant!  So we ducked in a corridor off of the main sidewalk so daddy could check his navigator for a good place to eat in Chinatown. While he was browsing, we spotted a menu on the restaurant window we were standing beside, and I couldn't resist taking a picture.

The menu listed some interesting choices in the Cold Dish sect.  Who's up for some vegetarian mockduck?  Does that mean it's fake duck?  What could that possibly be made out of?  And if that doesn't tempt you, what about some boneless pig leg or jelly fish?  And surprisingly, we decided to eat here... although we opted for something from the Hot Dish portion of the menu. 


I'm the poster child for a hot humid mess!

Emilee got some kind of noodles.
(They looked like big fat worms, but I kept that to myself!)
Ashlee got some pork dumplins.

Scott ordered an appetizer that tasted like onion rings! YUM!

Scott ordered a garlic chicken/veggie/rice mix.

I went safe with chicken fried rice!
After we came out of the restaurant we spotted a group of people standing on the sidewalk.  We realized they were having a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the opening of The Face Shop.  They had the dragon head costumes... pretty fun to watch. 

We finally found what Emilee was looking for... tons of booths lined up along the streets stocked full of knock-off purses, wallets, scarves, jewelry, etc.  She wanted a Louis Vuitton purse, so the hunt and the bargaining began.  She found exactly the purse she wanted, and it was tagged at $55.  As soon as Emilee barely laid her eyes on the purse, the woman grabbed it and started with a hard sell routine. It was like being at an auction.  I told her we had $25 to spend, and she said, "Oh, she need a wallet."  Ok... bye.  We started to walk out, and she said, "Ok, ok, $45."  I said, "She only has $25," and we turned to walk out.  She hollered, "Ok, ok, final offer $35."  We said no thanks, and we left to see if we could find the same purse elsewhere for our price.  In the meantime, we were looking for the item on Ashlee's list.  She wanted a NYC over-the-shoulder tote bag, which were also more than she wanted to spend.  After browsing a few more shops and not finding what Emilee wanted, I told her we'd give her $10 toward the purse, and we'd give Ashlee $10 toward the bag she was looking for.  So we went back to the bargain lady, who started off all over again at $55.  It took us a minute to remind her that she offered it to us for $35 about 15 minutes earlier.  She finally relented, and Emilee left the booth with a huge smile and her new knock-off!  We kept looking for Ashlee's bag but weren't able to find the one she wanted in the colors she wanted in Chinatown, so we decided to find one when we got back to the city. 

We'd had enough of Chinatown and decided to hit the subway back toward the city.  Our next stop was the World Trade Center site.  We decided not to view the memorial but opted instead to sit and rest and look at the towers being built at the site.  It was quite an unbelievable thing to imagine buildings of that size coming down.  As we sat there, I thought about and prayed for all the families whose lives were changed on 9/11.  I still remember where I was when I heard what had happened and, like millions of other people, I was glued to the television for days watching the events unfold and listening to hundreds of stories being told.  It definitely puts things into perspective... reminds you to treasure every day with your family!

Freedom Tower being constructed

The other tower being built

Quite an amazing thing to see.
While resting and deciding which way to walk next to get to Battery Park to see the Statue of Liberty, Emilee spots an ice cream truck.  Did I mention that it was 300 degrees?

Hey, is that an ice cream truck?

I believe it is an ice cream truck.
Do you see our girls standing in line?
Daddy was a pushover!

They each came back with a freezing cold ice cream cone...
And they thought it was worth every penny!

On our way to Battery Park we found the Federal Reserve!
There's a bunch of gold in there!  Wish we could take a tour!

The Merrill Lynch bull... who knew that would be a photo opp?

We finally arrived at Battery Park.  We thought about taking a ferry over to the Statue of Liberty, but it was still undergoing renovations and wasn't open for us to be able to go inside.  In that case, I wasn't interested.  Besides, the lines were really, really, really, really long, and did I mention it was 300 degrees?  Nobody had any interest in standing in the blazing sun for a couple of hours to take a ferry over to a statue if you couldn't get inside.  So we opted for posing with the statue in the background... way far off in the background.  :-)

Battery Park with the city view of Freedom Towers behind us.

Posing in front of the Statue of Liberty... really, I promise it's back there.

Can you see it back there?
There it is! The Statue of Liberty!
Then we saw a crowd starting to gather and wandered over to see what all the hoopla was about.  There was a group of street performers entertaining the crowd.  They did some pretty impressive stunts, so we stood and watched for a bit.

By the time the performance was over, we decided we'd hit the first subway station we could find and head back in the direction of our hotel.  We had afternoon plans to go to the top of Rockefeller Center.  Couldn't wait to get a view of the city from the top!

Riding the subway.

I'm still a hot, sticky, sweaty mass of humidity!


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