Day Three: The day I met Miss Liberty

Today, was statue day! At 8AM I toon an early subway to Battery Park and made my way to the Statue cruise! I then realised I booked the 11AM slot, so then I had a couple of hours spare, and the sun was blazing!

I ended up spending most of the time sitting on the bench by the harbour and looking directly at the open water with the Statue of Liberty in the right of my vision in the distance. She still seemed rather big even from a distance, you could see the detailing very clearly.

When I was sitting there, I had time to think and let it sink in where I was! I have always seen the statue from a picture or on the television, but now it was real, and right in front of me. It took me back slightly I must say.

After various phone calls and me ‘bragging’ haha where I was, It was time!

I went through the airport style security at the gate and was sent to board Miss Liberty (The name of the boat).

It was a very pleasant ride, I sat on the sun deck, with the breeze flowing in my face, and my hair… and the sun shining directly on us. It was amazing.

When then docked, and thats when the sheer size of the statue was understood. She was huge! Also she was the only thing on the island so it made her look even larger! She was stunning, and she definitely still looked like a beacon of freedom and liberty, just as her sculptors had dreamt she would be.

The sun again, blazing down made her look even more phenomenal.

After I had lunch, at this time I had also found out about the crash in Times Square. This was rather scary considering my hotel was only two streets away from where the crash had happened.

But that was soon forgotten when I did lap around the bottom of the statue. I said it before and I will keep saying it, she looked amazing. The colour and the torch, the sheer size. She was so amazing and again something you can only get from being in person.

Afterwards I then boarded the ferry ‘Miss New York’ back and this time we passed Ellis Island which again looked amazing with the lovely weather and clear sunshine.

I then headed back and took some rest in my hotel. I also walked past the crash site, which was still closed off to the public and was eerily quiet.

Once at the hotel, I kicked off my shoes and shorts and slumped on my bed with the AC at fall blast, the heat was now fully on!

More to come 🙂 x x x

Day Two: Bus Touring and Night Cruising

Today was a greatly busy day! It started at 8AM with me boarding the bus tour, the first of three tours to commence around New York city. The first took me around similar to where I walked on the first day. It went around Times Square, It went uptown around Tribeca, and then the World Trade Centre and Battery park.

I then, after two hours came back to Times Square and boarded the Mid town bus, that took me around the Empire State building, Guggenheim Museum and the Rockefeller centre and the North side of Central Park.

The third and final bus was the down town bus and that took me all over Brooklyn and did a full loop of the enormous central park.

This was great, as I got to experience three different tour guides, all very different and put a different perspective into the different parts of New York city. It also was good to retrace my steps in a way from the day before, but this time sitting so my feet and legs got a well earned break from the 45,000 steps they did the day before!

Night Tour

The night tour was sensational.

It was a cruise along the New York skyline and it started when the sun was just setting and finished with the sun fully set.

It started with the view of the Empire State building and the Chrysler building in the background, with the sensational view of the sun beginning to set behind the two mega structures. The gentle breeze on my face and the gentle sway of the boat as it sailed past the skyline, was an amazing feeling. I just felt so peaceful, no stress, no fuss, no mess. Everything faded to the back of my mind and I felt at one with the city, and with myself.

We then moved to the tip of the city which consisted of Battery Park and again the World Trade Centre. Just like the rest of the city, the trade centre and the surrounding buildings leaped into a whole new life when the sun went down. They illuminated brightly showing a new side to them, a new life, they look alive at night. Looking at the buildings on the way back when the sun was fully down was breathtaking! Truly incredible!

We then headed back to the dock and I walked back to my hotel! Ready for the next day of festivities, which consisted of a ferry to the State of Liberty! Exciting times!

Brandon x x x

Day One: Ground Zero, serene, sad, and humble

This was one of most emotional aspects of the trip. Since I can remember I have wanted to visit and pay my respects, and witness for myself the now peaceful place where such terrible destruction and plain right evil had occurred.

I remember when I first set eyes from a distance on the north pool. My heart instantly started to get faster, as this was it! I was finally doing something I wanted to do for years and years, and it was just there in front of me. It wasn’t until I stood next to it that I realised the sheer size of the footprint the trade centre towers had left behind, in the pictures below, the specs on the other side of the pool, those are people, just to put some perspective into place.

One of many facts I learnt is that the footprint is exactly an acre. Each floor of each tower was an acre big. So pretty big one could say. I wasn’t due to go to the museum until Friday, but just being there was so emotional.

Reading all the names wrapped around the pools, emblazoned into the surface, put into perspective the level of human life lost that day, and that each and every one of the people who died that day were individuals, all had names, stories, quirks, talents and skills. All lost. All gone.

It wasn’t all doom and gloom in my mind however.

While I was sitting there, looking up at the now finished Freedom Tower, North Towers replacement, otherwise known as One World Trade Centre. All the surrounding buildings, all the trees, greenery and of course the two beautiful pools. This shows that we didn’t fall to the terror that happened, we rose. We came together and a beautiful place of remembrance and solidarity rose from the  ashes of the graves of where two magnificent towers once stood.

The feeling I felt that day, being there, after such a long time of dreaming. Its something I can’t describe with words. That feeling will stay with me to the day I die, and will never mellow or go away.

I strongly urge you if you are reading this that some point in your life, pay ground zero a visit. Its something you will never regret, and something where you will left a changed person.

More on that coming in the next post when I actually visit the Museum!

Stay Tuned!

Day One: An amazing first day New York Bound!

So On a Monday afternoon, at around 5 O’Clock, I departed from my Family at Heathrow airport, went through the security gates, and I was officially on my trip to New York, alone. It did seem daunting at first, but the thrill of it far outweighed the nerves.

I boarded the British Airways 747 flight, bound to JFK International Airport, New York.

After the 7 and a half hour flight, I landed, at 10:30pm US time. Climbed into my Yellow Taxi and made my way to the hotel.

I remember the first time I saw the Empire State building in the flesh, emblazoned in Green and White. It was stunning and made me remember truly where I was. Before hand the trip hadn’t seemed to have sunk in, the full realisation that I had finally made it to New York! This cemented and ended that thought.

I struggled with my phone signal and that took up most of my night but afterwards I had a sound first sleep in my lovely bed and great hotel!

The first day

The first day I didn’t pre book anything, as I wanted to adapt to the atmosphere of the place. Get my bearings. The first place I went was for a walk to Central Park! It was only 10 mins away from my hotel!

This was my walk to the Park! 

It was beautiful. The park itself was very unlike any other park I had been too. It was very quiet, even though the bustling city of New York, the city that never sleeps, was business as usual on all sides of the park. All you could hear was the tweeting of the birds overhead, and the quiet talking of the people walking around the park and sitting on the grass. The park was also very quiet because of the time of day, I got there at about 8:30AM (Im a very early riser!), so that made it even better.

The park itself is also huge. I spent two hours walking along the park, and got to a map to see how far I had got too. I hadn’t even made it half way, and Im a fast walker! So this shocked me greatly! There was many different areas inside, there was great lawns, dense forest, and wide open lakes. One of which you could boat on which I did and shall explain on another post on another day!

The sun shone so bright too. Walking around in shorts and a t-shirt was very liberating after the cold winter jackets and jeans for the British weather I was accustomed to.

I sat on a rock next to the lake for a little while and saw little turtles! They were so sweet I wanted to take one home but that would be cruel, and could also pose a problem when I eventually had to leave! Haha but that was saddening haha!

I walked through the nature reserve which was also just as silent, just the birds singing, the birds tweeting, and the water flowing. It really was a very serene atmosphere here.

After the park I took to the city, and walked a good distance of 5th Avenue. Walked unknowingly until the last day past Trump Tower, and also went by the Apple Store 5th Avenue! I then took a subway to Battery Park. Within Battery Park, I saw the Statue of Liberty again very serene to actually see it in person. It was rather small due to the distance but I would go to see it in person very close hand and again this is for a later post!

After chilling in battery park and having my first New York hotdog for lunch, and some ice cold lemonade (Its now around 30 Degrees) I decided to take the walk to Ground Zero. I had mixed emotions of this trip as this was something I’ve wanted to have done for a very very long time. I have always found the story and the details of the attacks on the World Trade centre so fascinating and heart breaking and wanted to go and see the ground zero site in person to pay my respects and be able to feel the atmosphere that surrounds the site there.

I will end this post here, and my next post will go into more detail of the next part of my trip! Stay tuned!

Brandon x x 

My Trip to New York!

Before I start this post I want to apologise for my lack of posts. I didn’t bring my laptop with me and to be honest I was so busy I didn’t get a chance to blog it all at the time like I wanted! So I’m making up for it now in a series of posts over today and tomorrow, with everything I saw, learnt, felt, and discovered. This was truly a life changing trip. Sounds pretty big, but it was! This will be a trip that will forever stay in my mind.

So I hope you stay tuned, the first first post will be very shortly!

Letting go.

Something I always hate to do.

It’s the single most hardest thing to do in life in my opinion. In business and personal contexts.

When you put your all into something, like a project or friendship or anything, and then it gets to the point of letting go, it can hard. Emotions are a complex thing, a thing that can’t be controlled no matter how hard you try.

Im a very emotional person. I like to put my 100% into everything I do, so when it comes to saying goodbye or letting go, I find it bloody hard. I get connected very easily and when I try to let go of things to try and move forward, it takes a lot from me to say goodbye and let go.

You will have to say goodbye to things close to heart through out life. Great projects, great business ideas. Great people. Amazing people.

It often hurts less when you let go, than trying to hold on

This is the quote I think of whenever I have to depart with anything thats close to me. its still hard and it takes its toll but it makes it a little easier at least.

So yeah. Letting go is hard. Letting go is really, really hard.

But I run by the theory of fate, and hope the things that I have to let go of now, will come back to me, and I will still get to find a way to see that project prosper somewhere else, see that idea grow, see that person again.

So never give up, letting go is the first step to moving forward. It isnt always a bad thing, it seems it but when you let go, those things usually find a way to find you again, thats what I believe, and will continue to believe.

B x x x

After recently turning 19, what happened after my 18th birthday?

A year can pack a lot of milestones. This year was no exception. On Saturday the 22nd April, yours truly turned 19, finally, so now would be a good time to reflect on another year that has passed. So what happened after my 18th birthday last year.

The single biggest milestone would be starting University. I started in September 2016, and this was a huge change. I met brand new people, who now are some of my closest friends, and some being friends for life. I have adapted to the new learning style, and love the way we learn in our course, from sitting in the circle to working on new personal project for the first time. This is great and I would never go back.

Socially as well, I feel I have developed so much since my last birthday, I’m more confident and feel more proud of my work and what I have achieved, what I’ve been able to conquer since last year.

I still have a long way to go, but at 19, I feel like a completely different person to when I became 18 a year ago, and hopefully this time next year, when I hit 20, I would have changed and developed even more, academically, and as a person.

See ya soon!

Brandon x