Oh my god, you guys! I'm in a whole other country! At last! It's only taken me nearly 38 years, but finally I have set foot outside Australia! I've been in New York for three days now and I still don't think it's sunk in.
I'm in love with the place already, and I've barely even scratched the surface. I haven't ventured too far downtown so I'm yet to see the iconic sights like the Statue of Liberty and Empire State Building. I expect the love affair to deepen dramatically once I do...
You'd think those landmarks would be the first things that I would go see, but I'm spreading out the awesomeness. Just being here is enough awesome to sustain me for now.
What have I seen? Squirrels! Sounds ridiculous to get excited by them, I've obviously never seen one before. When I saw the first one, it took me by surprise and, in my head, I shrieked, "Oh my god! A squirrel!". I took a photo of course.
I spent Saturday exploring Central Park and it's amazing - huge, beautiful, full of people and so much to see. New Yorkers truly are spoilt to have such a vast patch of green in the centre of their huge and bustling city. The view of the skyline from the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir is spectacular and the water features are postcard perfect, especially The Lake with all the row boats punting about on it. The bridges are beautiful and the wrought iron lamps! They've got loads of olde worlde charm and there's so many of them everywhere.
I saw a pair of geese with a clutch of gosling, loads of turtles and an owl. Yep, an owl. There was some kind of bird day on at Belvedere Castle and a woman was giving a talk about owls with a massive owl sitting on her arm. It looked pretty unimpressed, but it was awake when it should have been sleeping afterall. I felt like we had something in common.
Today I went to the Guggenheim Museum and the Museum of Modern Art and saw works by Warhol, Picasso, Matisse, Kandinsky, Monet and Van Gogh. I got quite a buzz from knowing I was standing in front of the real deal.
I've eaten some New York staples - hotdogs and pretzels from street vendors and chicken soup with matzoh balls. Tonight I had a toasted bagel with cream cheese and it was delicious. I foresee more of those in my future.
I'm feeling pretty pleased with myself for finding my way around without too much trouble and I've managed to buy a weekly Metrocard from a machine at the subway and catch a bus back to my hotel twice. Go, me! I should save the self-congratulations for after I work out the subway...
Sorry this has only one photo - I have loads more obviously, but it's time consuming to upload them and I'm doing this at a net cafe.