Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Vertical city: my town

The view down and north from the Empire State Building. 

We were tourists in our town, for an evening. 

North, past Central Park.

This is a big city. 

 Northeast, the Chrysler and the Queensboro Bridge.

I had forgotten.

 South, downtown.

Sometimes you have to look at a thing from a distance to see how it really is.


Sense of wonder restored.


  1. I love being a tourist in Manhattan. I always find a new neighborhood to enjoy. Would you believe I've never been to the Statue of Liberty or Ellis Island? A New Yorker for 49 years. Shame on me. I am going to go!

    1. I did go nearly insane just jumping though the tourist hoops to get up there on what was a slow night, for them. In season, I'd kill myself. And I think the Staten Island ferry is still the best way to see the Harbor! But...I'm tempted to get on one of those red tour buses :-)

  2. I haven't been up in the Empire State Building since I was a kid. I remember from back then how crazy the wind was on one side of the building and the other was an absolute calm!

  3. Thank you.I think I'll bring Victoria's Chrysler painting back into this room...I need my NY fix!

  4. Wow. (From the fringes of fly-over country)

  5. I have been longing for a NYC trip, but things keep coming up and preventing me from visiting. I am turning 40 this year. Your photos are my inspiration to return, but I'll wait until summer. I've done a lot of the touristy stuff. Any suggestions from anyone on other things to do (I'll have a 7 year old with me).

  6. I'm in the city often, on business, and once the day is done, I go back alone to the hotel and clean up while other colleagues break off together for a drink. My excuse to "clean up" is actually an opportunity to achieve separation as I am then convinced the city is mine and can go anywhere I want--but always alone, the best way to try to fathom a fascinatingly incomprehensible city.

    Mostly I go to neighborhood places and have a drink and then dine at the bar. Campagnola's and JG Melon's on 3rd are traditional favorites, but so are many truly anonymous places--which will remain anonymous, as the fun, after all, is finding those special gems all by yourself.

    Should say that my dear wife Deb's favorite place was the 21 Club, and the Christmas season never passes that I am not seated in front of that beautiful fireplace, with loving memories wafting about, while nurturing an eternally-broken heart.

    I envy Maria and Vince for living in the city, and visiting this wonderful blog is my way of seeing the city from afar through the curious eyes of one who cares about her town--and mine, a boy from Mississippi.

    1. There's your memoir, Clark: A Boy from Mississippi. Starting with your friend, the cat...

      Thank you for reminding me about JG Melon's. I've been meaning to take Vince there for the burgers and those wonderful souffle-like potatoes in a basket. I haven't been there for many, many years.

      Eating at the bar is a great New York pleasure, isn't it? You can choose to meet new people or be alone; no one really bothers you. You can just be, without being conspicuous. I liked the Balthazar bar, and Cafe Fiorello's, and several in Brooklyn - Fort Defiance, the Clover Club.

      I have never been to the 21 Club. And I had no idea you came to New York often. Dark horse.

      And I am very sorry about your broken heart.

  7. Cafe Fiorello! that's a memory to cherish!

    What draws me back and back to 66 SF is your appreciation of the smaller things in NYC - the neighborhood markets, the parks, the "normal" views that remind me that that great city is made up of thousands of smaller spaces... but I love this post that pulls back to see the whole in wide angle.

    We are definitely going to plan a safari to the city in retirement - like a month - to walk the streets, sit in the cafes, and just breathe it all in.

    Stay safe. i've send you a boat-load of storm today.

  8. Gorgeous!
    I've never been up the Empire State, maybe someday.

    1. Wonderful pictures, Marie!
      I've never been in NY before.... maybe someday.


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