The day is too gorgeous to stay indoors. So I grab my bag, bound down the stoop and hit the sidewalk with no particular destination in mind.
I head west, toward the Hudson River. Two blocks later, I jump onto the High Line and make my way south. Here, in this unique elevated park, I have no choice but to become a gawking tourist. I love catching glimpses of the Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty from different vantage points. I marvel at the new buildings, some breathtaking and some quirky, standing side-by-side with their architectural great-great grandparents. The sounds of construction, traffic and voices combine to become a fantastic city symphony. I walk along the flower-lined railway-turned-park until it ends at the Whitney Museum. I descend the stairs and happily turn right to head into Untitled (the window-lined café at the corner of the museum), where I sip an inventive cocktail and nosh on pimiento cheese while people watching.
Back outside, I continue west until I am walking alongside the river. I turn left and One World Trade Center looms ahead. I am in no hurry, and have the whole day ahead of me. After a few blocks, I turn east and wander for awhile through the cobblestone streets of Greenwich Village, West Village, Soho and Tribeca.
I stop just before reaching One World Trade and enjoy a muffin and iced coffee while resting at an outside café. I catch up on a couple phone calls, check social media, and tilt my face to the sun. I could easily fall asleep where I sit.
Back on my walk, I pause just north of the 911 Memorial. Today is not the day for reflection or sadness. I turn instead and cross West Street to cut through Brookfield Place. High-end stores beckon while my cheap canvas backpack bounces behind me, reminding me of my finances and gently prodding me toward the glass doors and out to the North Cove Yacht Harbor.
I pause for a moment to stare at the boats, hypnotically bobbing up and down. I know there is a bench close by. I could just sit for a moment… bask in the sun… and maybe lie down… I mean, I see people stretched out on park benches all over New York City. It’s a THING, isn’t it? Okay, fine. I turn on my heel and begin to walk along the river again, through Battery Park.
I’ve made this walk before. Past the incredible memorials, in and out of shade, gardens, around park benches, street musicians and pigeons.
At one point, I was strolling alongside a family (with a VERY New York accent), and the woman pointed across the water and told her daughter, “That’s Queens!”. Now, I’m not from NYC… but I AM from New Jersey. So I quietly leaned over and told her, “I’m pretty sure that’s New Jersey” (I was actually completely sure, but wanted to be sweet). She argued with me, so I let it go. As she pulled out her phone to pull up maps, I caught her husband’s face as he rolled his eyes. 😂
I moved along.
p.s. Not sure what the boobs in Battery Park are all about, but I felt oddly drawn to them…