New York, New York

We left Iceland sadly yesterday, determined to return.  We arrived in New York as dark fell – something we hadn’t seen for a week! – tired and hungry.  We were grateful to be in a city that famously never sleeps, as it made getting dinner for the family at 10pm very easy – there’s a 24-hour supermarket just around the corner.

Our apartment here is teeny-tiny.  The children are all sleeping on two fold-out couches which take up the entire “lounge”, and front door opens right into our “bedroom”, which isn’t really a room so much as an alcove.  But it sleeps 5 and is in a good area and there’s enough kitchen to make cups of tea and breakfast and heat up supermarket dinners, so it will do.

This morning it was pouring with rain.  The Dad and I thanked our lucky stars it hadn’t been like that last night when we were carrying our heavy backpacks through the city, and also that the weather would be cooler than the 31ºC earlier predicted!

The children, spoilt by a few wonderful Icelandic summer days, were very reluctant to budge from the apartment.  We dragged them out anyway.

It’s an easy walk to Times Square, and the big Toys R Us store was a dry refuge from the storm.  Of course the ferris wheel inside (!) was a must-do, and we had great fun exploring everything else in there too.

On the ferris wheel!

On the ferris wheel!

We had an early lunch at a nearby deli, then went to M&Ms world (against The Dad’s better judgement).  I let the kids spend some of their pocket money on the “candy wall” – a rather expensive way to buy M&Ms but they loved being able to choose their own flavour & colour combinations.

Next stop was the Discovery Museum‘s exhibition “The Art of the Brick”, which was amazing.  We hadn’t known about it until we saw a flyer at the information centre in the morning.  Fainjin particularly liked the full-sized dinosaur skeleton, and I suspect he’s itching to get home to his big box of bricks!

Lego sculpture

Lego sculpture

Flash photography was not allowed, so this is blurry

Flash photography was not allowed, so this is blurry

lego mosaic of The Great Wave off Kanagawa

lego mosaic of The Great Wave off Kanagawa

From there we wandered down to the Highline, which was a little further than we had thought but we found it nonetheless.  We climbed up the stairs and ended up walking about half the length of this charming park.  What an inspiration, to take an old elevated railway and turn it into park space!

The Highline

The Highline

We took the subway back up to 42nd St, and walked to Grand Central Station to admire its sheer grandiosity and gorgeous ceiling.  Then we headed to the Rockefeller Center and Fainjin had his first Lego Store experience.  It was very very busy, but we still had fun.  There’s a big Lego model of the Rockefeller Plaza right in the window, and next to it there are about 10 questions – if you can answer them all you can claim a prize, it says.  So we spent quite a long time counting various things and looking for features and hidden items.  Eventually we thought between us we had got them all – some were pretty tricky! – so we summoned a staff member and gave our answers.  He was very generous and told us we didn’t need all the answers, and gave us a “close enough!” on some of them anyway.  Then he said for our prize we could each make a free minifigure!  So of course we spent even longer searching out just the right head, torso, legs, hair/hat and accessory each.  It was great fun.

Checking out the mini-scene in the Lego Store window

Checking out the mini-scene in the Lego Store window

And then it was time to come home for dinner & bed.  The children admitted that it might have been worth leaving the apartment in the morning, after all.

© UpsideBackwards 2014.

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