I snapped a couple of shots when I was walking to the subway last night. I would like to get more into night photography in general, as I think Manhattan lends itself well as a subject of night photos. I am also looking forward to the light starting to come back, as I hate walking out of the office into night time. Sometimes, if the work day was busy I may not have left the building at all, the whole day. If I leave work then and its dark out if feels really depressing, like the whole day is passing you by. Although on the plus side, while it is dark I can take night shots!
I have a strange duality in my life. I work a few blocks away from Wall Street, right near the NY Stock Exchange. The financial center of the world. But I commute about an hour each way and live a block away from the ocean.
This blog is basically about being stuck in New York when I would rather be elsewhere, and finding a way to make peace with that. My mornings on the beach help me to do that.
One of the things I struggle with in my life is finding a way to conform to the ideals of an urban city dweller. Trying to make myself do things that I feel little to no drive to do, like work long hours and save money. Give me a computer and a guidebook and I will find the cheapest way to get from Cusco to La Paz by bus. But I am not good at investing or saving money, or lets face it paying bills. That’s not me, not my personality. In this city if you are not that type of person, you are punished. Work hard, save money buy a house have kids, buy things for them, CONSUME. I don’t want to consume, I want to experience.
Working in an office sucks. It really drains your creativity and leaves little time for other things in ones life. Coping mechanism, – my mind is in the clouds, and my heart is on the road.
It had been a theory of mine for a while that sports often bring out the worst in people. This was confirmed yesterday on my commute to work when I shared a train car with hundreds of drunk teenagers intent on smoking weed, smashing beer bottles, and other general mayhem on their way to the ticker tape parade held to honor The Giants Super Bowl win.
For those of you non New Yorkers out there who are unfamiliar with the phenomenon of the ticker tape parade….a little history :
“This time-honored tradition began in 1886 when President Grover Cleveland led a procession from Madison Square to Battery Park for the dedication of the Statue of Liberty. Young clerks, inspired by the sight, dumped the reels of paper that came from the “ticker,” a machine that continuously recorded the fluctuations of the stock market.
By an informal estimation, there have been more than 200 such parades since that first ticker-tape parade 125 years ago, honoring soldiers, astronauts and celebrated musicians. But since 1991, the ticker-tape parade has become almost solely reserved for sports champions.”
I had been thinking of stopping by the parade to watch and take some photos, but the general rowdiness of the crowd made me think twice about it. Instead I went down to Broadway when the parade was over to see what kind of messy piles of paper were left behind.
Today I am going to explore Castle Clinton, seated deeply withing the beautiful Battery Park. Another oddly warm winter day topping out in the high 50’s, it should be an excellent day for it.
A brief history of the Castle :
Castle Clinton or Fort Clinton, once known as Castle Garden, is a circular sandstone fort now located in Battery Park at the southern tip of Manhattan Island, New York City, in the United States. It is perhaps best remembered as America’s first immigration station (predating Ellis Island), where more than 8 million people arrived in the U.S. from 1855 to 1890. Over its active life, it has also functioned as a beer garden, exhibition hall, theater, public aquarium, and finally today as a national monument.
Thank you Wikipedia. And off we go.
2:17, out the office door. Setting off at a brisk pace towards Battery Park.
2:22 Arrive in Battery Park. A lot of people walking around, enjoying the warm winter day. If every winter was like this one people in this city would be a much happier bunch.
2:25 I help some tourists take photos with the harbor in the background. They are from Spain and excited to chat for a minute with a native. Shooting some of the downtown skyscrapers is definitely fun.
2:32, I make it over to Castle Clinton. Not all that much to see, the kind of thing one would do well to dedicate like 20 minutes too tops. Still having said that, an interesting part of NYC history for sure as it was the first point on immigration into all America for a time. Maybe some of my own ancestors passed the gates here.
2:40, Wrapping up here. Great day for a walk, cool Castle to walk through.
2:55 Back in the office in under 40 minutes. Until next time!
Although my blog is centered on lower Manhattan where I have my lunch time escapades, every week I would like to throw in a feature I call “Dog Days”. About 4 months ago I adopted a rescue dog. This has been an interesting life experience. The dog has a few behavior issues that we are working on. She is also a very powerful, high energy dog. Before you get a dog you think “I won’t mind getting up extra early to spend time with my dog!” In reality getting out of bed an hour earlier every day with the dog was, I will admit it, a struggle for me. But something started to happen. Every morning on our long walk, we would see the sun come up over the ocean. Somehow, I went from feeling bitter about my shortened night sleep, to feeling that this hour in the morning is the best part of my day. The only part of the day that really belongs to me. I still may not exactly be flying out of the bed, but once I am out there, I am loving it. Especially since we have had such a warm winter. It also really inspired me to take more photos. I try and bring the camera down a few times a week and snap pictures of the sunrise. The entire experience has made me coin this as “The Year of The Dog”. I don’t know much about Chinese Astrology, and I have no idea if this is actually the year of the dog. But I think at least once a week I will post one of the pics here.