I always have a description for places that I’ve been. It’s a very personal opinion I form about the atmosphere of a place, how it affects me and also a very practical way to help me remember the gist of my travel, like how I described my feelings for Paris. Photos can remind you of a place, but only written descriptions can immortalise your state of mind at the precise moment you were there, seeing and feeling its locality.
So what about NYC?
To me, it’s like a Google search engine – one of the most used platform on the World Wide Web, establishing its own unique identity almost entirely on a cache of global personalities. In simple English, (and from the eyes of a visitor), it is a place built on a vast collection of cultures.
You don’t have to be born and raised in New York to be a true “New Yorker”.
Walking down the streets of the city, there are Italian and Chinese, then there are American Italian and American Chinese. The languages that they speak and the customs and traditions that they follow can be the same, except the latter hold the American passport and the former don’t. Unlike places like Tokyo, Hong Kong or India, where one can quite easily differentiate a local from a visitor, it is more difficult to know who’s who in NYC. For example, a Chinese man in his 60s can live in the city for his whole life and not speak fluent English; while a young graduate from China can converse in convincing American accent but he will not be considered a local.
It’s a jumbled mass, an urban agglomeration. Yet, from this clutter of personalities, emerge an exclusive identity, a super city where people stay to search and be searched regardless of who they are or where they come from.
Like Google Search Engine.
And there’s nothing more appropriate and fitting to represent the spirit of this city than the Statue of Liberty – a symbolisation of friendship between nations and freedom from oppression.
This statue is a transatlantic gift from France to America to celebrate it’s 100 years as a nation. It was constructed in Paris and here’s a trivia, it wasn’t originally green! It had a clear metallic, copper finish until oxidation between the sea water and metal took place.
Instead of getting to the top of the statue, we wanted to see it along with the panoramic view of Manhattan. So the option was to take the Staten Island Ferry from the Whitehall Terminal in Lower Manhattan.
The tour was free, took about 25 minutes each trip, and we saw something even more captivating than the Lady Liberty!
Separated by the Hudson River, the contemporary skyline of Lower Manhattan and Jersey City. It’s so breath-taking.
As for the chamfered and futuristic-looking building with an ascension of steel spire, it’s the state-of-the-art new One World Trade Centre that sprang up in the concrete jungle of Manhattan followed the 9/11 destruction.
See you tomorrow for more close-up photos of this building and an entire post about the 9/11 Memorial!
With love x