Fleeton Year of Adventure travel blog

On board the Staten Island Ferry - looking at the return ferry

Looking up the East River to the Brooklyn Bridge

Downtown Manhattan - the World Trade Centre site is where you see...

The Statue of Liberty as we went out

Lighthouse in Long Island Sound

Verrazano-Narrows Bridge connecting Staten Island and Brooklyn on Long Island

Ellis Island, where all the immigrants to the US came through until...

Midtown Manhattan, with the Empire SB on the left

The Queen Mary 2, in the Brooklyn cruise ship docks

The United Nations

Trump World Tower, across from the U.N.

The Waldorf-Astoria, on Park Avenue

St. Patrick's Cathedral, on Fifth Avenue

Back at the Rockefeller Centre

Lincoln Centre - this is part of the Juiliard Music School

The Theatre at Lincoln Centre - South Pacific was wonderful!

Fountains and front of the Opera House at Lincoln Centre

Macy's at midnight - the crews were busy working outside!

We started off our last day in New York by taking the best free tour (our bus tour guides had told us so) - the free ferry to Staten Island. We saw lots of the harbour areas, including Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty. On the Jersey side the dockyards were very busy, but there aren't many working docks left in Manhattan (some are now a maritime museum). Most of the dockyards in Brooklyn are now also gone and being turned into a park, but there are still cruise ship terminals, and that's where we saw the Queen Mary 2. When we got back from our boat cruise we took the subway over to Grand Central Station, and from there we walked over to the U.N. area. We knew we were getting close when we started seeing consulates flying national flags in lovely old buildings, plus lots of consular licence plates! At that point the U.N. isn't far from Park Avenue and Fifth Avenue, so we walked up and found some of the old hotels and swanky shops, as well as cathedrals. We then took the underground back to Times Square and had dinner at a Red Lobster (scrumptious) and took the underground up to the Lincoln Centre on 66th, in behind Central Park. We had bought tickets to South Pacific online the night before, and managed to get front row seats again. The stars of the show had both won many awards for the show in 2008, and it was fantastic! The baritone playing Emil was a Brazilian opera singer named Paulo Szot, and had been causing a sensation for several years in the role - he was very good looking and had a marvelous voice, and the female star is one of the biggest Broadway musical stars right now. Again, the stage moved back and forth, and underneath was a big 35-piece orchestra, which was spotlighted during the overture and interacte. There were two exits off the stage through the audience into two underground exits, so the cast was coming and going through the audience during the performance. The stage was so deep that at the back of the simple settings was a sand dune rising up by the seashore, and when the cast went back up the sand dune they got small and were just little background figures. The same thing happened when the stage actually slid back and forth - figures shrank back into their surroundings. For a few weeks this time of the year Actors Equity raises money for people with aids and other good causes, and at the end of every show they always ask for contributions, and sometimes offer signed memorabilia for sale by cast members in the lobby. Our other two shows we just saw chorus members, but this time when we went out to the lobby it was Paulo Szot, the star! Of course I took my donation to him, and got to talk for just a minute to him! (Even better looking in person than on stage!) The show had started at 8 and gone nearly 3 hours, so it was midnight as we made our way across the city to the New Jersey subway and even later by the time we got home. Along the way we walked past Macy's - the staff were outside busily putting up Christmas decorations, and the famous display windows were about 1/2 done!

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