Back From the City

December in NYC is a strange and wonderful experience. An already crowded city becomes more so, as tourists and locals alike wander about, shopping, gazing at the amazing decorations, eating spectacular food, enjoying the festive time of year.

I fully expect everywhere I go in the city to be crowded, all the time, no matter the month, but I did not anticipate the extra crush of insanity December would bring. On Saturday we wandered down the heart of 5th Avenue, along with tens of thousands of other human beings. At times, we could not move for the mass of people, everyone waiting for the light to change, the person in front of them to move. The holiday lights were mesmerizing and the display windows equally stunning.


It was uncomfortable at times, but most people were happy and friendly.

Rockefeller Center also impressed and the tree was beautiful.


On this trip we were joined by some great friends from Salt Lake City. We had a great time showing them our favorite places, like the American Museum of Natural History and Central Park. img_8048


We spent an interesting day out at Liberty and Ellis Islands. The temperature hovered around 30 degrees with winds approaching 35 mph blowing us all about. On the ferry ride over, the gusts took my breath away. Liberty Island is always a bit disappointing. The statue itself is impressive to look at, but the view from the water is equally good and does not require leaving the boat.


Ellis Island, on the other hand, never disappoints.


I am always awed by this room and the emotions it brings out. Imagining the thousands of hopeful immigrants who passed through this space inspires me. Members of my own ancestry were among those who entered the United States through this location. I wonder if I would have been as brave as they were. img_8031

We stayed in Midtown again (in the smallest hotel room/broom closet), making getting about very easy. We enjoy taking the subway, but prefer walking as it offers us a chance to see more. Even with the cold and crowds, I loved wandering the streets of Manhattan, especially in the evening, absorbing the lights and sounds.


Seeing the city near the holidays was an unforgettable experience, but I think next time we go, I’d prefer and October visit. Anyone else want to come along?


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About Ryan Carty

There are some who call me, Tim?

7 responses to “Back From the City”

  1. Liesbet says :

    You must be mentally and physically exhausted, Ryan. But, what great sights to behold. Festive and twinkling NYC, but oh so cold to explore. Great to do once, I agree. October would suit me better, but for now, I think I prefer less crowded scenes! 🙂

    • fenster says :

      I’m tired, but ready for the next thing. I hope that is story writing. I’ll take the rest of this week and the weekend to get focused and ready. The trip was fantastic, but it is always nice to be home…

  2. Ellen @ The Cynical Sailor says :

    I remember when I visited Ellis Island and feeling in awe of the fact that my ancestors made their way to this country via the very place I was standing at. It’s amazing to think about all that they gave up and left behind in search of a better life in the States.

    • fenster says :

      Yes, I felt pretty much the same way. This was my second trip to Ellis Island and the first since Hurricane Sandy caused much damage. It was equally humbling this time.

  3. jmh says :

    I’m so jealous! I’d love to really see NYC–the closest I’ve come is the Catskills.

    I’ve always thought that some day I’ll have a NYC publisher and will save my visit for that moment. Still working on it!

    Happy holidays and all the best in 2017.

  4. ahtdoucette says :

    What a fantastic trip! I haven’t been to NYC in years. I grew up in New Jersey so we used to take the train or bus over sometimes, never had the courage to drive over there. Thanks for sharing all the pictures and the memories.

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