On a recent visit to New York City…

At the foot of the Brooklyn Bridge
At the foot of the Brooklyn Bridge

It had a been a long time since we last set foot in New York, and as soon as we landed I wondered why it had taken so long to go back; we are talking more than ten years here, and New York is one of my favorite cities, we lived in Brooklyn for over twenty years.

It was waiting for us!
It was waiting for us!

It was a Mother’s day trip arranged by our two daughters Yasmin and Natalie, and it was definitely a “girls thing”. Needless to say, it was a great experience. The four days we spent there were filled with fun adventures uptown, downtown and all around the town and, we walked like I had not walked in a in a very long, long… time. LOL

Tulips in Central Park!
Tulips in Central Park!

The subways were our mode of transportation and we covered lots of miles from Brooklyn to Harlem and places in between. We acted like tourists in a town we previously called home. To be honest, when we lived in New York we hardly skipped a beat either, we frequently visited all the landmarks and museums, restaurants and attended all kinds of cultural events. I truly believe this is because I am a wanderlust soul at heart and now have two daughters that like to travel and discover places just as much as I do, Yippee!

My daughters and I make a great travel team and we each had our assignments; Yasmin was the Yelp expert that got us to all the right places to eat and had them lined up before we even set foot in the city. Natalie was in charge of accommodations and lined up a great Best Western hotel in the heart of Brooklyn (the R train was right outside) which made it easy for us to reach all the must see places that I had lined up for us to visit. Brooklyn Museum was my favorite stop.

Long lines...it must be good. It was!
Long lines…it must be good. It was!

So we ate “off the truck” Halal food near Rockefeller Center (delicious), walked to Central Park, and stopped at John Lennon’s memorial, Strawberry Fields, and then walked some more. One thing about walking in the big cities you don’t feel the pain until…you feel the pain. In my case, that was two days later, but Advil took care of that!

We covered a lot of ground (making up for lost time) FAO Schwarz, Brooklyn Bridge Park, Central Park, Harlem, Brooklyn and surrounding neighborhoods, Times Square, ahhh… the sights of Times Square (I’ll save those for another post, LOL).

Delicious cheesecake!
Delicious cheesecake!

We even made sure to stop at Junior’s in Brooklyn to get some of their famous (nostalgia) cheesecake, it is still good!

Travel–if only in your mind…

This summer, I attended a business conference held in National Harbor, MD; I did not recall hearing about this city before, at least not that I could remember.
Nevertheless, I quickly signed up to attend the summer institute conference. National  Harbor as it turned out, was all-good; especially because of its proximity to our nation’s capital, which I had the opportunity to visit during last year’s  conference.

Aside from the obvious reasons we attend job-related  conferences, there are some not so obvious benefits. One of the things I look for is location, location, location! When conferences are held in places I have  never been to before, (and that includes many), I jump at the opportunity; quickly  launch into a Google research project, and then get excited to learn all I can to begin plotting what to do when the workshops breakout for the day.

I love to travel, explore and see what the city I am in is all about. This morning I was looking through the picture gallery in my Droid with  the intent of deleting old files to free-up some memory. I came across a few pictures, taken during my two most recent business trips and instead decided  to share them with you. I will soon file them away in that digital album on the desktop I rarely ever go back into.

Washington, DC

The Washington monument was looking magnificent on the day I  took this picture. I could not ask for a better shot, and was truly amazed to see that it came out of my cell phone camera. I am by no means a photographer, but I hope for the best and expect the camera to see what I see, when I point and  shoot at an object. It is always a crime of opportunity; I may or may not have  the camera with me, but the cell phone? That is another story. LOL!

The sculpture shown here both took me by surprise and  creeped me out at the same time when I first saw it at National Harbor. I thought, what is that  all about? Its location made me

The awakening in full view

think it was making some reference to the sea gods and it looks intense and scary, at least to me it did. I have since learned it  is “The Awakening”, created by J Seward Johnson in 1980 and first  displayed in Hains Point, MD (another place I never heard of), for 27 years,  it was then relocated to National Harbor in 2008 when the sculptor sold it for $750,000! It must be nice!

I lived in Brooklyn, NY for more than twenty years, during  that time I visited every “must see” tourist site there was to see in NYC and even  some you would not want to see. Every museum: Brooklyn Museum, Children’s  Museum, MOMA, Guggenheim and places such as Madison Square, Empire State  building, Rockefeller Center, the Statue of Liberty–any and all major  attractions were part of my weekend itinerary, along with regular visits to  Macy’s for shopping and FAO Schwartz to ensure the kids did not complain—I was  a very smart mommy!

The point is this, there is so much to see anywhere you live  that you should not let the moments of your life go by without taking advantage  to enrich yourself. Gather some knowledge and share it with others. There are  no excuses accepted these days since Google can take you places you have never been before. I know, it is no substitute for being there, I agree; but  a “virtual trip” does not hurt anyone and if you ever get the opportunity to visit in person–you would already have an idea of what to expect when you get  there.

Bon Voyage!

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