"I <3 NY." It's a classic ad, and now it's true for me, too. I have the T-shirt proclaiming it. (Five bucks at a street cart.) Was I surprised that New York grabbed a piece of my heart? Absolutely. I'm not one for big cities, and I tend to avoid noises, crowds, and in-your-face anything. So to say I was reluctant to go to New York City for the RWA National Conference doesn't start to describe my feelings.
Still, I had a book to sign, so I registered. I made my Romance Trading Cards to hand out to eager collectors. I even worked up a proposal for a presentation, which was accepted, so I had a third reason to go: pay-back time. Or pay-forward, whichever. I rode up to the top of the Empire State Building, but saw neither Cary Grant nor King Kong. Not even Tom Hanks. :( Still it was amazing, and the perfect start to my first day. I even wandered around, looking for a Miracle.
And no, I wasn't hoping for designer miracles--I'm no fashionista. (pause while I lmao) But you know, it was the wrong season for the miracle I hoped for. lol Still, I went to Macy's and took a pic of the sign. Alas it was closing, so I never made it inside.
Wandering around on my own might have kept me safely and sensibly in my hotel room, but even at midnight there are thousands of people on Broadway, the location of my hotel. Yes, Times Square! It's incredibly bright and well-policed. People of all sorts out all night. "The city that never sleeps" is accurate. Over the next week, I was out at 11pm and 1 a.m. (don't tell my mom; she's a worrier) and I didn't think it any more dangerous than walking in my hometown. Maybe less. I visited the Met, I partied at both the Algonquin and the Waldorf-Astoria hotels, and I was planning to eat my breakfast when a concert broke out! Alicia Keys appeared on the Good Morning America show, singing "Streets of New York" in New York, right outside my hotel. How cool is that? :D I was roughly four people back from the performers, which being short, means I was thrilled she wore a green dress so I could find her over everyone's heads.
So what captured my heart in particular? The lights? The people? The amazing food -- oh, don't get me started on the food!! The history? The sights? Yes, yes, yes, yes and yes. The energy of the place is incredible. For a small town girl, being in a huge city like Manhattan, and only several blocks of it at that, should have been overwhelming. All I can say is I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't experienced it. So, like all the amazing cities in America, I suggest you visit and discover its wonders for yourself. You never know if you'll like it until you've been there. Next time, I'll take my husband and we'll see a show.
What's the most surprising place you've visited? I'll add it to my list of "must sees." Megan