Our Trip to New York
New York City: September 23-27, 2010

We planned a trip to New York with two purposes - visit family and do some of the tourist things that Mike and I hadn't done during trips he has made with me since 1994. This was a quick trip, based on a sudden plane ticket sale where travel had to be completed by Sept 30th.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

We stayed in the Sofitel Hotel near Times Square. Hotels in The City are so expensive that I figured I might as well splurge a little...

View from our room:

We arrived in the evening and ate dinner in Times Square. I thought we might eat at the Hard Rock Cafe, but they had a celebrity charity event in progress. So, we wandered the streets of Times Square for a while, under constant barrage from people with signs, calling out to everyone who passed by in an effort to draw together an audience for a comedy show. "Comedy show tonight - hey, do you like comedy?" Hungry and tired, we settled on Ruby Tuesdays. As we got to a quieter area, I asked Mike "Honey, did you know there was a comedy show tonight?"

On the way back to our hotel, we saw the free money guy. Mike tried to take pictures, but they didn't come out well.


Friday, September 24, 2010

Early in the morning, we walked to Penn Station and took the Long Island Railroad out to Smithtown. My Aunt Pris picked up use at the station and dropped us off at my great Aunt Mary's house for a while to visit. Then, we had a very nice lunch with Aunt Mary, Aunt Pris, and my cousin, Steve. Time passed quickly and we made a mad dash from the diner to the train station.

For the evening, Mike had arranged a very special date night - a very fancy dinner at the Gilt restaurant in the Palace Hotel. Here is the "liquid mercury" art we passed as we entered the restaurant:

Before dinner, we enjoyed a drink in their bar area. If you ever get the opportunity to go to the Gilt restaurant, we highly recommend the smoky manhattan. We opted for the tasting menu, which was absolutely fantastic. They gave us a copy upon request:

We had a wonderful time.


Saturday, September 25, 2010

In the morning, we walked to Grand Central Station and took a train upstate to Poughkeepsie. Nice morning and a great ride. My uncle's fiancee, Darcy, picked us up at the station and brought us back to New Paltz. When we got to their house, we found my Uncle Leroy busy cooking (not a surprise for a guy whose nickname is "Cook it man"). We had a wonderful lunch and lots of great conversation with Uncle Leroy, Darcy, and cousins Kamalyn and Sean Stricker.

After lunch, we took a quick stop at a favorite local spot before heading back to the train station.

Here's Darcy and Uncle Leroy:

After getting back to NYC, Mike and I decided to head to a bar he had heard about - "Angel's Share". For those of you not familiar with whiskey distilleries, as the whiskey is aged in casks, some of it evaporates through the wood. The evaporating vapors in the air of the warehouse are called "angel's share". Angel's Share bar was a neat little place tucked away in a Japanese restaurant on the East Side of Manhattan. We had heard it could be hard to get into - it is a very small and formal bar where they provide very little room for people to wait for tables. So, we went early. Dinner was made up of some very good appetizers - mostly Japanese foods. The ambiance and the view outside the large picture window were so pleasant that, if I lived in the area, that bar would be a favorite haunt of mine. The drinks were fascinating. The bartenders at Angel's Share do their own whiskey infusions and thus create their own custom drinks. Well worth a visit.


Sunday, September 26, 2010

A couple we know was taking a trip to NYC to visit some gourmet restaurants (a hobby of theirs). They asked what touristy things I might recommend while they were there. I told them that I would definitely go to the Statue of Liberty. "Even though it seems goofy to make so much effort to see a statue, the importance of it will strike you while you're there." ...and that was when Mike reminded me that he had never gotten to go see the Statue.

So, we set up a trip to go to the Statue of Liberty as well as to see the names of my great grandparents on the "Wall of Honor" on Ellis Island.

These pictures document our ferry trip from Battery Park to Liberty Island:

Here we are in front of the statue:

On such short notice, tickets to see the crown were sold out. I was able to get tickets for us to see the pedestal and the museum within the statue. On the way to the security line for the pedestal, we saw the "practice balcony".

This torch is at the entrance of the museum (inside the statue's pedestal).

Inside the museum, more sample status parts:

The museum is well worth the short amount of time it takes to go through it. It gives the story of the statue's design, how difficult and expensive it was to build, all the efforts people in Europe went through to raise the money to create the statue, how the ship carrying it from France to America ran out of fuel part-way across the ocean, and the trials of the Americans raising money to pay for the pedestal construction. Just having the statue at all was a tremendous feat. This picture compared the statue to other famous structures:

This picture was part of a gallery documenting the statue's role as a symbol of American freedom:

Ok, it's time to head up to the top of the pedestal (can only be reached by a spiral staircase with about 150 stone steps inside the statue).

Looking up at the interior framework of the statue (designed by Eiffel before he built the Eiffel Tower):

View from the top of the pedestal:

Next stop - Ellis Island. Here is the building where the immigration processing was conducted:

Prior to being what it is today, Ellis Island was a fort:

The "Wall of Honor" on Ellis Island, and the panel with my great-grandparents' names, William and Priscilla Lucyshyn:

I think this is my favorite picture of Mike from this trip:

On the ferry back to Battery Park, Mike took a couple of pictures above the crowd:

Sunday night, we had a very nice visit with a friend of mine from high school (who I hadn't seen in about 18 years), Melissa Kinsella. It was great to see her!


One bit of levity, since we heard it so often in the subway and train stations....please mind the gap.

Last updated 05Nov2010