Live From New York, It's...

“Start spreading the news
I am leaving today
                     I want to be a part of it
                        New York, New York”
~Frank Sinatra

The City That Never Sleeps, that’s right it doesn’t sleep as one of the unofficial names it has besides; The Big Apple, The Capital of The World, The City, The City of Dreams, The City So Nice, They Named It Twice, Empire City, Gotham & Hymie Town. Is where I’m off to now on a wee bit of an expedition as you could call it?  I’m actually searching to do it on a shoestring. Yes, as an unofficial Lonely Planet guidebook, but I do have my copy of New York Encounter with me, it's a great pocket Lonely Planet. But, yes, I know that it can be done on a budget. Recently the New York Times had an article, Who Say'sNew York Is Not Affordable? , but that was for real estate, not traveling.  Oh, well, it was worth the time to check out. Now, let me remind you that I’ve here once before, but only once. I know right? With how close it is to New England that I’ve only been once, but that sometimes happens when it’s in your own backyard & can tell you about Boston or Portsmouth or Portland for that matter much more. But really to think of it, those outings have not inspired a blog post yet about travelling, but you never know. I’ve spent more time in San Francisco & know my way around, but growing up watching heaps of movies & TV shows about NYC, I kinda know what to expect. Yes, I’ve seen all the Sex in the City episodes too, but this is not a blog about that, it’s on travel off the beaten path.
There’s an easy way to get to NYC or not, depends on how you look at it. You can always hire a car or take your own to drive, but really with the cost of parking it’s not worth it one bit. So, let’s look into more reliable transportation. There’s Amtrak, yes, it’s reliable, but it’s also a wee bit pricy from Boston. Jet Blue sometimes has specials, but you got to watch closely & book ahead of time to get them.  Then there’s always the bus too. Honestly, the bus is the best bet & bang for the buck.  C&J Railways ( from Portsmouth has a twice daily departure, they have all the amenities that you would find on one travelling say in Latin America with waters, yogurts, fee wifi. Got to go back to my backpacker roots here to score a deal. There are deals to be had, just have to put it out there & be open for what you find. Can’t force it or it won’t work. I’ve searched the other bus company’s too Greyhound, Peter Pan, Bolt BusMega Bus where with all of them, if you book far in advance you definitely can score a barging with any of them. There are deals to be had. I have taken Greyhound before & it wasn’t bad at all.  Can’t complain about the deals that these companies’ have out there because on some you can score a ticket for $1 each way if you book far in advance. However, riding the bus in the States is not as luxurious as it is as say Latin America, but they do have wifi in them these days. Bus sorted, it is the way I’m headed. Now, next stage accommodations, well let’s see I’m going to be staying with friends (it’s a great way to catch up with ones that I haven’t seen for ages) which make this a lot more fun in a way cos you get a local perspective on what to do besides having guarantee a good time.  There are some hostels in NYC, just hop onto Hostel World to score a deal.  Just search the other travel sites too, like Couch Surfing, Kayak, Priceline, Hotwire, etc…to see what strikes you fancy.  Really, it’s not that hard, just go out & just do it!
To navigate the city, well by foot is my most preferred method. But to get around in a flash I choose a 7 days Metro Card at NYC Transit great deal to buy the unlimited card to save rather than the daily card, since I am going to be here for a week. If I had a bike than riding would be an option, but for me it’s just going to be riding the L, K, J, etc…& to see the city by foot. Yes, by foot, I can go on my own pace, have conversations with my friends & of course stop when I want to for the photo opts. There’s something that is calling me to explore the city with my camera right now. Let’s see where it’s unfolding.
The last time I came here, I did some cool things. Some of my adventures took me to the famous Serendipity3, remember those scenes in the John Cusak movie with the “world’s famous hot chocolate”, I did order one & it was scrumptious. Yes, Andy Warhol used to trade his paintings here to pay for his meals when he was a “struggling” artist & Jackie O also go here. It’s definitely a sweet spot near Bloomindales’s. Let’s see I’ve seen the famous Washington Square Arch in the heart of Greenwich Village,  “I’m having what’s she’s having” from Harry Meant Sally but I’ve been to Katz Delicatessen to split an order of the potato latkes.  Shopped at Macy’s, window-shopped at Tiffany’s, visited Times Square (it was busy not like the opening scene of Vanilla Sky), went to the MET, Central Park & of course I had to go to Strawberry Fields to photograph “Imagine”, The Statute of Liberty, checked out the famous Waldorf Astoria, Grand Central Station to take the subway & of course to take a trip to the top of the Empire State Building. Oh, if your in the mood for authentic Mexican City food than head on over to La Palapa at 77 Saint Mark’s Place in the East Village. For an awesome vegan lunch then go over to Wild Ginger  at 380 Broome Street in SoHo & Little Italy border at the cross streets of Mott & Mulberry. Great Cuban food can be found at Cafe Habana at 17 Prince Street in NoLita. A friend of mine was quite impressed on how many things I crammed into only a few days of sightseeing.  For now my adventures might take me back to some of these spots & possible new ones. I’m on a photo expedition & my basis is going to explore the city as a traveler with advise from a local not someone who “thinks” they know the place. I’m going to go looking for the real source of a truly authentic experience.  
Riverside Park
Well, I did stumble upon some great sites.  NYC The Offical Guide with all things related to tourism. It’s been very helpful. A must for any visitor or local to the area. Let’s see, I will have to use it as a base. Also, the Village Voice  has been quite good with local things happening & an excellent restaurant review guide. Not to forget the New York Times too is excellent, but be careful that you don’t go over your free articles. Lonely Planet has a brilliant article: 40 Free Things To Do In New York City. Club Free Time has a great site too: Free Events Things To Do In New York City. There's a great site for Food Truck locations, yes New Yorkers made the food truck a classic iconic symbol, check out the following sites: New York Street FoodNYC Food Truck Association. Oh, there's a great site devoted to Farmer's Markets, Greenmarket Farmer's Markets , it's really a must to check out because it has an excellent list of where the markets are & their goods for purchase.  National Geographic Travel City Guides New York has some great things too, it's worth your wild to check out the site! Don’t forget about & Yelp too & type in New York City to see what comes up.
Now let’s see where this wanderlust is going to take me & the adventure to unfold…
Delicious Hummus with Mushrooms at Mimi's Hummus
 To my surprise I ended up having a great day. I caught up with a couple of friends from Maine & it's been amazing! Nice being around good people too to raise your vibrations!  I enjoyed checking out the West Side & making my way over to Riverside Park with one friend who took me to a great place to get real New York pizza! Ah, it was nice to be out in nature admiring all the flowers in bloom.  Also, with another friend I had an awesome dinner in Brooklyn at Mimi's Hummus, where the hummus with mushrooms was superb! I highly recommend this place.  Oh, the inner artist in me can not resist checking out Brooklyn Industries for some fun finds. Also, it was sweet to check out Prospect Park for an after dinner stroll to take in the beauty of another fantastic park & to walk off dinner. Lights out in Brooklyn, who knows where tomorrow will bring...

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