Monthly Archives: April 2010

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The One With The First Glimpse Of Times Square & Broadway

Views of Midtown New York

Despite a fairly late night the previous date, I was up at eight in the morning. Not by my own choice, but because my dorm mates were all up early, catching a football match at a nearby pub.

Football match! Nearby pub! Eight in the morning!

I am only saying.

Since I was already up, I thought I will make my way to New York Broadway to get tickets to my favorite musical – Mamma Mia!

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The One With The First Evening In Chelsea, New York

Views of Chelsea, New York

As I ascend the steps from the dismal-looking subway station to the ground of Chelsea, I could smell the icy-fresh wind and the occasional whiff of spring. I can’t believe I am here, in New York! When finally the best of Chelsea came into view, I was stunned into a broad grin that I couldn’t wipe off my face.

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The One With The Journey To New York City

Hong Kong International Airport

You know what they say about how you start a journey of a lifetime with an experience you’ll never forget? Well, mine started the night before (details of which I would rather not go into, tee hee) and as a result I was sleepy and starving as I arrived at Hong Kong International Airport. I was told that my seat will be 40D and my departure will be at Gate 4. The silly me went to Gate 40 instead, got puzzled why I was to board a plane destined for Mumbai before I realised my mistake.

And what a mistake it was! I had to walk a big round the airport to find the right gate. Good thing was that I made it to the airport with plenty of time to spare, what with the warning about Easter weekend crowd and all.

The Bureaucracy of US Customs & Border Protection

The flight was uneventful as my previous other flights. Just that it was incredibly long, and I couldn’t sleep more than three hours combined over the journey of 16-hour. So I watched movies… Avatar (yay!) and Kungfu Panda made the cut. I also watched all their episodes of Friends Season 8.

I mean, how apt was that, to watch a TV series which got me dreaming about New York in the first place?

It was past one in the afternoon when I touched down at JFK Airport. The queue for immigration was incredibly long, and it was here I encountered the tedious layers of US Customs bureaucracy, which include some forms and a “special interview” at in a “special” room”.

I knew that there would be a red carpet treatment for me.

Howard Beach Subway Station

The airport itself is impressive. Consisting of seven terminals, connected by a frequent air train service, going from one terminal to another was a breeze… but not if you are looking to go to the subway (in my case, the Howard Beach station). After making some rounds on Air Train, I found the subway, at which I realised to my dismay that I was 27 stations away from my final destination!

Talk about a long train ride. On one that is not that impressive either.

The journey to Chelsea, where I would be staying for the next two days, took almost an hour. But thank god, what a different that district had made on my impression of New York!

More photos of my first day in New York here.

The One With The New York City

The One With The New York City

Twenty four hours from now, I will be high up in the air, crossing continents and seas, making my way to New York City.

New York… what is it like? It is tall skyscrappers, dizzying grid-like streets, breakfast at Tiffany’s, big yellow cabs. It is Times Square, Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building and Central Park. It is about the lives of Ross, Rachel, Chandler, Monica, Joey and Phoebe.

Most of all, it is about my mother. The last time we spent time together was in 2006 when she came home for a month. My mom, the pillar of my family, has been living in the States for the past ten years.

Visiting New York has been a dream for me. It has now become a reality. For that, I am eternally grateful to the One above.

If you like, add me on Twitter or Facebook to follow my journey through the Big Apple.

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