It was just 127 miles from New Castle, DE to Jersey City, NJ but it wasn't a pleasant ride. The first 40 miles or so was pretty and relaxing but as soon as we approached Trenton, the traffic increased and then we got on the New Jersey Turnpike and it was under construction almost the whole rest of the way - not a fun area to travel through. The trip took about three hours so we arrived a little after 11:30 and quickly checked in started getting into our site. Like I said in the last post we are staying at Liberty Harbor RV Park, which is a parking lot with lanes a little longer and wider than in a regular parking lot. I was mistaken earlier when I said it was blacktop as it really is black gravel. We did manage to get in the site fairly easy and did have room for our slides to extend but there is no way you could put out a patio awning. They have picnic table available but they require a much smaller RV to have space for them. We are here to see NYC and it will suffice.
Michelle was supposed to fly into Newark airport about 3:40 but she still hadn't left Jacksonville at that time. Her original plane had a maintenance problem so they had to get another plane but still hadn't got it when they finally, about 4:20, scheduled Michelle to fly to Birmingham, then Chicago before arriving here about 10:45. She originally was supposed to go from Jacksonville to Baltimore to Newark. Needless to say, she wasn't a happy camper, literally! :-) We did finally get her picked up and made it back to the park before midnight.
Monday we headed into NYC. The advantage to this RV Park is its proximity to NYC. It is about a leisurely 10 minute stroll to the Grove St PATH station which takes you to 33rd St. in Manhattan. There you can get on the MTA subway and go about anywhere you wish in the NYC area. We first had to go to the 59th St and 5th Ave stop to visit nearby Tiffany's (next to the Trump Tower) and also to the F.A.O Schwartz Toy Store. That MTA station is also very near the Southeast corner of Central Park so we also had a seat there on a bench and ate a pretzel from a street vendor. It was getting close to rush hour by then so we decided to come on back to the RV Park.
Tuesday was time to go to Coney Island so we essentially made the same trip as Monday but instead hopped the train to Coney Island. It was cool that day (low 70's) so it wasn't too crowded though there were a lot more people than I would have expected on a cool, windy Tuesday. We did have a hot dog at Nathan's original hot dog place and generally just explored the beach and amusement park area. Most of the stores were closed but enough were open for us to help the NY economy. After a few hours there we came on back to the Mothership again. That trip was a little easier as we were starting to learn our way around the subway stations.
We went to the 9/11 Memorial Wednesday morning. You must have reservations to get in and they are free. They just use the tickets to limit how many are in the memorial at any one time. It was very nicely done with two very large pools built on the sites of the two towers and a waterfall around the entire perimeter of each. The perimeter wall around the pools contains the name of each person who died in the attack. Michelle and Doris also visted St. Peter Roman Catholic Cathedral's Ground Zero Catholic Memorial where the first responders spent a good bit of their time and also where people met getting info on their loved ones. Then it was time to see Broadway. We had made reservations for Mamma Mia! showing at the Winter Garden Theater on Broadway and made our way there for the matinee. Needless to say, the show was fantastic. No big names that we recognized but they were very good and we had a great time.
Thursday and Friday we had 48 hour Hop On - Hop Off bus tours of the Downtown, Uptown, Brooklyn and Night loops. Due to all of the travel time and waiting on buses we were only able to get the Downtown, Brooklyn and Night loops done on Thursday. Friday we went back in and did the Uptown loop which includes Harlem. We were also able to go to the Top of the Rock which is atop the Rockefeller Building which is NBC's headquarters and also to take the Harbor Cruise around Ellis Island and the lower part of Manhattan. Thursday and Friday were both part of the heat wave gripping the country the temperature approached 100° and probably higher sitting in the sun on top of the bus. We were exhausted by the end of each day and it was near midnight Thursday after we got back from the night loop. These four tours allowed us to see the complete boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn. We feel like we have seen all of NYC that we want and any future visits will be restricted to seeing Broadway shows as much as time and money will allow.
Today, Saturday, we spent the day in the Mothership resting and letting our feet rest. We have pounded the concrete at least five miles every day of our stay here and the old joints don't work as well as they once did. We also had to get the Mothership ready to go and get this blog entry posted. Tomorrow we head for Boston where we will have a more relaxed exploration for eight days or so before Michelle heads back home.