May 17, 2015

Hello, Finally, From New York.

Hello, finally, from New York.

Where I'm sitting in my hotel room trying to regroup in a city that literally does not sleep.  My soundtrack is the incessant beeping of car horns, jack hammers, the sirens of police vehicles and the whoosh of elevators and all the other machinery that keeps a hotel going.  Ironically, it's all more soothing than the television or the radio.  Too many choices on both and somehow both are too 'loud' and attention seeking for this time of the day.

It's just gone mid day and I'm having a bottle of Diet Coke, New York style.  The flight delays and having been in three different time zones over I'm not sure exactly how many days is still playing tricks with my fuzzy brain.

Routine really is key when it comes to time zone fatigue so I've been on autopilot since I arrived and the rest of my body is slowly catching up.

Been at the gym this morning where I gazed up at the sky scraper next door from under the weights machine.

Before walking past some very Manhattan looking pieces of gym equipment (whose function currently elude me) in search of a good old fitness ball and a pair of dumb bells.

I promised myself I'd finally get around to using my Naked 2 palette whilst on this trip and I have.  Only the first two shades from the left, though.  It's a start....

And I've been eating the healthiest breakfast I've been able to find on the Avenue of the Americas.  The hotel lobby has a 24 hour deli which makes up for the absence of a fridge or kettle in my room.  They do a lovely yoghurt and muesli and have some pretty fresh fruit.  I also like their coffee but I'm a bit disappointed that I didn't have to use my Starbucks name for my order and that my non fat cappuccino did not come with chocolate on top.

But I'm getting ahead of myself.  My LA 'stop over'.  Those of us who couldn't be reallocated a connecting flight were bused to a hotel in Long Beach.  As we I ate my chocolate from the plane, my fellow delayed travellers and I shared stories, jokes and any bits of information we were told at the airport.  We stopped short of a group singalong but the camaraderie helped ease the pain getting through a Wednesday the 13th of May that seemed have dragged on way past its welcome through too many timezones.

The hotel was lovely, as was our free dinner but I just couldn't work out the Mr Coffee machine.  Even after the best night of sleep I'd had in ages.

The next morning, we hit the super efficient highway system of Los Angeles.  This was the peak hour.  There was also a beautiful beach (presumably Long Beach) that we drove by before this but I was a bit slow with my iPhone to capture it.

No break downs, no jams just beautiful ribbons of six carriage motorway to be driven along at a clipping pace.

And then we reached LAX.  I'm normally relieved when I see an airport in the horizon but this time, I was beyond relieved.

It was a spectacularly uncomplicated flight and before I knew it, we were in New York.

Where the cross city tunnel and its traffic looks eerily like it does back home.  Only with more honking and more use of that old creation of a three car lane at a single lane merge point trick. And more spectacular 'by the skin of their teeth' moments.

Times Square.  Just walking through it and being part of the pressing throng of pedestrians makes you feel as if you're on a movie set.  The buildings are awash with so many flat screens that it's like walking in broad daylight.

We caught ourselves up on the big screen of a Revlon commercial.

After we found ourselves amongst a whole bunch of people taking photos of themselves up above on the screen.

Also on our post flight walk were some policemen who were happy to pose for photos, a couple of brave ladies wearing nothing but body paintings of the American flag for a purpose they never made clear and the lights and noise of a couple of fire engines.  And all of this was set against the colour, smoke (from the street food vendors) and music of a part of the city that physically assaults you with its need to party all night.

Turning off West 42nd onto 6th was like stepping into the real world, only a one in which Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga were billed as headline acts at Radio City Music Hall.

I could read New York's road signs forever...

This post is too long already but a few words about Woodbury Common before I go.  You have to go.  We took a bus from the city which was well worth it for convenience and cost.  It's about an hour drive which is rather relaxing and full of trees, cottages and scenes of 'normal life'

The outlets are practically a village.  They even have their own turn off from the highway.

The VIP coupons aren't your simple A4 page folded in thirds, they are quite literally bound in a book.

The stores are set out at the foot of rolling hills and it's quite surreal walking through rows of quaint cottages filled with discount designer and surrounded by manicured flower beds.

Things got hectic pretty early in the piece.

Relax only one thing in this photo is for me - the $60 ballet flats.

And such high stakes shopping clearly had to be fuelled by lots of coffee and baked goods.

It took us 4 hours to cover a quarter of the shops.

And with our energy flagging, it was time to stop for a sweet cheese CroisBun (every bit as delicious as it sounds) and a new strategy to conquer the whole mall before close of business (and the last bus back) at 9pm.

We did it and I'll be back with the details.

Take care and thank you for reading this far.  It's been long and rambly and just a touch jet lagged!


  1. It was a pleasure to read, and sounds like an exciting trip. Love how exciting cities can rid you of your jetlag.
    Have fun, my dear- you really deserve this xxx

  2. Enjoy yourself. I love reading your travel tales x

  3. I'm glad you're there safely after all the dram it took to get there!

    I can't wait to see more about the outlets - share it all! My mum has been floating the idea for a while now about doing a girl's trip to NY for the shopping - after my sister spoke so highly of it, and knowing that it wouldn't be something that would interest the guys, hehe! How did you get the VIP discount book?

  4. Great post. I love Manhattan, and you are really in the middle of the middle of midtown:). Other parts of the city are much quieter! My apologies in advance, but can I ask you to remind me what has brought you there?

  5. Loving the travel posts! I had to laugh at those gym items pls do share if you figure out what they are. Have a blast lovely xx


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