Corin Anderson (magellanic) wrote,
Corin Anderson

NYC visit

I'm in for the evening, now, cozy in a hotel room that doesn't show any signs of hurricane-force winds or lack of utilities. In fact much of what I've seen today shows mostly business as usual, due in large part I'm sure to a lot of hard work to get the world running again. On the descent into JFK I saw a handful of large trees in a golf course showing their small root system now above ground. The LIRR ran only three trains from Jamaica to Penn station each hour (oddly, those trains were clustered within 20 minutes of each other) rather than the usual about ten. Along the train ride into Manhattan I saw several more uprooted trees and caution tape wrapped around fueling stations that were presumably out of fuel.

The power was never out at my hotel but their phone system remains unreliable (on several occasions in the past three days I tried calling in order to confirm my reservation but was never able to make a connection). The subway lines work through midtown (ie, where I'm at) but don't head to Lower Manhattan (ie, where I'd like to be tomorrow for work) than that. Times square was packed with tourists taking pictures of themselves and each other. I took a few photos myself. I saw the Microsoft store and stood in line(!) to do so (the queue was short but for waiting in line I got my own personal demo). I got a demo of Surface and Windows 8, both of which are flashy. I visited the Disney store long enough to see that they had Wreck-It Ralph gear, and I walked through the Hershey's store. I saw a few people huddled near the bathrooms in the Hershey's store charging their iPhones. I turned around at about 43rd Street and headed back to the hotel, stopping at a forgettable Indian restaurant for dinner.

One new place I saw on Times Square was a Times Square museum. It's a hole in the wall now but I sense they have ambitions. The museum hosts some history on the area (it was formerly Longacre Square and it had a few decades of really rough time through the 1980s) and the New Year's Eve countdown crystal ball from 2008. The ball really is covered in Waterford crystal, and up close you can be suitably impressed with the crystal. From any distance, though, it looks no different than oh so many LEDs and inexpensive acrylic prisms. Sorry, Waterford. The laser etching on each tile is a nice touch, though.

I brought a hat and scarf with me and I'm glad I did so, they've kept me warm enough. I wish I'd brought my gloves but my pockets do just about as good of a job.

I'm optimistic that I'll adjust to NYC time quickly and wake up at a decent hour in the morning. It feels late to me already (maybe not 8:30p late just yet, but more than 5:30p).
Tags: travel
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