Day 20 | New York One World Trade Observatory

The well-rehearsed PATH trip across from Jersey went without a hitch and in no time, we were awaiting our time slot for our chance to get up in the One World Tower for a view across a huge area and the weather is clear. These tickets are for sale on the day but every time we have been past the building there has been a queue hundred-odd long. While waiting, we took a few moments to wander the two remembrance pools. 

Again, like the Statue of Liberty this is a secure location and access includes agreeing to baggage restrictions and metal detectors. This is quickly performed and we made our way to the lifts. Three walls in the lift are LCD screens and provide a presentation of the history of New York during the trip. 

As a large group from lift trips developed we are marshalled through an audio-visual of something, a sales description of some optional iPad guides to what you can see through the windows and a photo as you enter if you want before being lead down to a floor that you can walk the 360 around the windows. Our time included sunset so did a quick circuit before making towards the setting sun to watch it descend below Brooklyn. There were hundreds of people wandering the floor but it wasn't too crowded. The New York Marathon was on yesterday and there are many people up here with their medals on. 

After sunset we had plans to meet Alfredo from the photo safari uptown (always wanted to say 'uptown’ in context). We made our war onto the Metro like pros and were confronted by rush hour. An announcement made it clear that in addition to the regular rush hour some problem had delayed the trains and every service that pulled in only got one or two extra on a packed carriage proving that us at Fulton Station were slightly keener than the last station it had stopped. After checking alternatives, we decided to persevere and crammed after several more had stopped in. Sardines are better suited to stacking but we were on our way. 

It was good to catch up with Alfredo what sights he had visited since we were together last. We have planned to walk across to Broadway to Ellen’s Stardust Diner. Some broadcast stage was being assembled in Times Square, maybe for the announcement but there are still people everywhere. It was interesting how bustling it was for a Monday night, the ice rink in Bryants Park doing a good trade. Ellen’s had a bit of a queue but quickly we were seated. 

This diner is famous as one where the wait-staff also do musical theatre. It lived up to its reputation and some of the performances were amazing. Many of the staff are between engagements and they are proud of those that never come back having made on ‘Broadway’. Too soon we were again farewelling Alfredo, him further uptown, us unthreading the Metro-PATH-light rail. Again, we could rely on the good advice of strangers to stop us going on the wrong train. 

Highlights: 
Rosie – Ellen’s Stardust Diner
Angus – coming to grips with the rail