Tuesday, 20 May 2014

#BEDM Day 20 - Being Adventurous


Day 20 of Rosalilium’s 'Blog Every Day in May' Challenge


I'm going to tell you a tale of a 19 year old girl who dreamt of visiting New York, of huge skyscrapers and the champagne 'Sex and the City' style lifestyle.


Wall Street, New York
 
 
One day, a flyer from STA Travel dropped through the letterbox of her student flat - 'Returns to New York only £185!' the headline screamed (mainly due to the fact that it wasn't long after 9/11). The naive young girl (who'd always loved a bargain) thought to herself 'that doesn't sound half bad!' and cogs started turning in her brain.

'If I went at the beginning of September' she thought, 'I could fit it in before going back to Uni - I wonder what cheap youth hostels there are in the centre?'

Macys, New York
 
 
So the girl started tapping at her computer keyboard, looking for a place to stay, adamant that she was going to the Big Apple, regardless of the horrified protests from her mother (that only made the girl more determined to prove she could do it).

 Fast forward a few months and eagerly clutching her bus tickets, flight tickets, dollars, and hostel confirmation, she took some tentative steps onto the coach from Bath Bus Station to Heathrow Airport.
 
New York Yellow Taxi
 

All along the M4, all across the skies over the Atlantic and all through the corridors of Newark Airport, she kept telling herself 'I can turn back at any moment; if I really don't like it, I can use my credit card and go straight back home'. Of course, this wasn't a side of her thoughts that anyone else knew, not least her own mother and father!

New York
 
 
 The first thing she had to learn was to find her way from the airport to the centre of Manhatten. Now any other normal person would have realised that at 10pm at night, the safest way to get there would be by coach with all the other tourists. Not so, thought the young girl, 'the subway is much cheaper!' - regardless of the fact she had no idea how to use it or where to get off or even the fact that there was no-one else using it.

South Street Seaport, New York
 
 
But still, she ploughed on, managed to make her way to 34th Street Station, pulled her luggage bag up the stairs and was greeted with the most amazing sights, sounds and smells, thinking ' this is fantastic, it really is exactly like the movies!'

Time Square, New York
 
 
She had a fabulous five days, walking for absolutely miles, getting blisters on her feet (until she realised she could buy a all-day travelcard...) and visited as many free musuems and experiences as she could - South Street Seaport, the East Village, Wall Street, Grand Central Station, New York Public Library and Central Park as well as many others. She made a few mistakes (well, who doesn't?); things like walking though Lower Manhatten on her own at 9pm and the stupidest thing - getting off the bus at the wrong stop and being dumped in the middle of Staten Island (opposite a corner shop with two customers having a massive barney).

New York
 
 
On the last night, the slightly wiser and just-a-little-bit-suntanned young woman paid to go up the Empire State Building at dusk. She looked down at the city streets and thought to herself 'what an amazing adventure I've had, surely, one day, sometime far in the future, I'll tell the tale of how Granny's first trip abroad on her own was to the city that never sleeps, aged just 19 years old.' 

The Statue of Liberty, New York
 
 
The young woman's now an older woman and only has one regret about the whole trip...
...back in 2002, the word 'selfie' didn't even exist (let alone a decent camera phone), consequently, there's no proof the young girl was actually ever there!
  

12 comments:

  1. Wow you were so brave. It looks like it was so worth it though.What fantastic memories.:-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It so was! I really want to go back one day! :-) x

      Delete
  2. Good for you on doing that trip by yourself! I've done London a couple of times on my own but I can imagine even London feels tiny in comparison!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'd been on a few days to London the year before so I kind of used that as a practice run! :-) x

      Delete
  3. WOW!!!! What a brilliant tale! And a bargain too!!! You chose a good time to go! I laughed about the selfie-yes indeed!!!! I was the same when I went off to Bali for a year-I chose the cheap option rather than the tourist safe option!!! X

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think you just don't worry about the "safe" option when you're young! I look back at my trip and wonder how I managed to get away with some of the things! :-) x

      Delete
  4. So very brave!!! I did a similar thing at a similar age and too am gutted that there's so little evidence!
    You've blogged about it now though so it's official! Have you been back? Would you go back?
    M x Life Outside London

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Haha, I guess that does make it official! :-) To answer your questions as well, No not yet and Yep, absolutely! :-) xx

      Delete
  5. What a wonderful story! New York is a pretty overwhelming place- I'm so impressed you went on your own! xxx

    ReplyDelete
  6. I love New York. LOVE IT and I'm actually thinking of going by myself, though I do have friends who live in and around the city! This was a lovely post! :) x

    Kenzie
    Behindhazeleyes06.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Kenzie! Go for it, even if you're on your own, you'll have so much fun and won't regret it! :-) x

      Delete

Thank you very much for all your lovely comments; I do have every intention of replying but sometimes life with a baby gets in the way...

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...