Thursday

To start of this post, here’s a couple of photos of our apartment from the outside. The bay window on the top left is our living room, which is on level 4 of the building. The actual entrance to the building is slightly lower than the footpath. It’s a nice old building. I’m not sure when it was built, but comparing it to some of the buildings I’ve seen on a walking tour it’s probably over 100 years old.

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Entrance to the apartment building
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Looking up at our living room window

Thursday morning we went to Americano for breakfast, a restaurant in a nearby hotel where they specialise in Mexican style breakfasts. The meal I chose was chicken with corn chips and an avocado based sauce. It was nice, but it turned out to be a bit spicy.

Afterwards we walked to the Highliner Park, an old elevated railway track that has been converted into a park with a nice walking trail. The park runs for about 1.5 miles (so just over 2 kilometres) and features gardens, statues and street art. There are also cafes and food carts along the way.

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The old tracks running alongside the paved path

The railway track was originally built back in the 1800s to transport goods from the docks of the Hudson River to inland areas. As roads and trucks developed there was less use for the railway until at some point they discontinued services along there. A large portion of the tracks were demolished because they were seen as an eye sore, but in the 1990s a group of local residents came together to protect what remained and start work on developing it into a pleasant public space.

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An open air cinema on the Highliner trail

The current part of the park was opened a few years ago, and there are plans to develop more of it in the next couple of years. We walked the full length of the park, and stopped halfway to enjoy an ice cream sandwich (vanilla ice cream sandwiched between two choc chip cookies – yum yum!). It was a really nice walk, and the weather was perfect.

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Enjoying the sunshine in the park

There are some interesting statues and art installations along the walkway. There are also some nice pieces of street art that can be seen from the walkway. He’s a nice bright one we saw along the way.

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Street art seen from the walkway

At the end of the Highliner we went over to Chelsea, a nearby neighbourhood with a big food market. We weren’t actually hungry, but wanted to take a look since we were in the area. The market is undercover, and there are heaps of stalls and shops selling fresh foods, but mostly cooked foods. We spent a little while looking around, then went off in search of a rooftop bar we’d seen from the Highliner.

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Cute cupcakes for sale at the Chelsea market

Unfortunately the couple of bars we tried were either closed, or private for hotel residents only. Instead we found a restaurant on the street and sat outside while we had a snack. From there we caught the subway back towards Times Square where I bought tickets to see Jersey Boys that night. Tickets at the discounted ticket booth in Times Square go on sale at 3pm. On Monday when we bought Spiderman tickets we arrived at 3.30pm and there was no queue. Today we got there just before 3pm and there was a massive line. It took almost 40 minutes to get through the queue, but it was worth it. Tickets for Jersey Boys were discounted with 40% off, and I managed to get seats in the middle of the bottom floor about 16 rows from the front for $88. And, while I was queueing there was a separate queue for frozen bananas. There’s a new season of Arrested Development airing soon on Netflix, so to promote it they had set up a Bluth Banana Stand in Times Square. Unfortunately George Michael wasn’t actually there to give away the bananas.

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Bluth Banana Stand

After I had my tickets I caught up with Stephen who had arrived the day before. He’s transferred from the Melbourne Accenture office to New York. He had a few things to sort out for work in the morning, but was free in the afternoon. We met up at Times Square for a coffee, then walked in the direction of 5th Avenue to check out the shops there. On the way we came across a film shoot where they’d closed off a terrace area and fountain. Across the fountain we could see Ben Stiller!

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Ben Stiller on a film shoot in New York

We stopped to watch for a bit as they did one take. It was interesting to watch the extras get into position then all of a sudden start moving once they started filming. I was also surprised they just closed off the area in the middle of the afternoon. They let people walk through while they were adjusting lighting, but it was still having quite an impact on peak hour pedestrian traffic. From there we went to 5th Avenue and checked out the shops, including the four storey Uniqlo (hello Ron!), then had Mexican for tea. After that I left Stephen to head to Jersey Boys.

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Outside the theatre

It was a really nice old theatre, and as I said my seats were great. I really enjoyed the show. It was fast paced, the songs were great, and it was impressive the way they transitioned from one scene to another. Quite a sad story, but a great show!

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A sneaky photo before the show started

I spent about an hour at Times Square after that, enjoying the lights and general hustle and bustle before heading home, well and truly ready for bed.

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Times Square at night
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