Monday, 25 March 2013

LIFE OVERSEAS: On a foggy day in New York

NO SHOW: The writer did not get to see the Statue of Liberty but it’s more reason to return to the Big Apple

WEEKS before my trip to New York, I formulated a detailed and intricate plan entailing everything I had to accomplish before returning to Ireland.
As I only had three days in the city to complete the extensive list, my itinerary began at 8am and did not stop until my legs became weak like jelly.
Adventures make life more interesting and captivating, and definitely extra memorable. I might not have embarked on an impromptu trip to Timbuktu, but this was a journey that I had penned in my metaphorical notebook in my head.

Visiting Liberty Island was top priority and I attempted to buy the tickets for the ferry online. To my utter despair, the website stated that both the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island were closed due to the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.

I then learnt of a ferry that travelled to Liberty Island en route from Manhattan Whitehall Terminal to Staten Island. And the ferry is a free mode of public transportation.
This meant that I would see the statue with my own eyes. I hoped to take some photographs as a memento.
Hundreds — mainly tourists — boarded the oversized orange ferry. There were also many people who lived on Staten Island but worked on the mainland.
My family and I bumped into an elderly Chinese woman who carried several bags of groceries and even Chinese newspapers. She and my mother chatted, and we learnt that she has been living on Staten Island for decades!
There were a few Statue of Liberty miniatures on the ferry — children were wearing green Statue of Liberty crowns made out of foam.
Tourists on the ferry jostled for a good view by the windows on the right hand side of the ferry. They came prepared with cameras, guidebooks and binoculars. I secured a good, strategic spot to ensure a full view of the statue.
Several minutes passed and the excitement in the eyes of the tourists began to cease. Everyone had the same question on their minds — where is the Statue of Liberty?
We were crestfallen when we realised that the fog was too thick for us to see it. The most exciting part of the trip was spotting a seagull flying through the fog. We also could not see the statue on our return trip.
But I still enjoyed the ferry ride and the experience of viewing the surroundings of the statue.
I did not succeed in completing one of the items on my checklist. However, this gives me more reason to return to the Big Apple.

This is the third of a four-part article. The last will be published on April 7

The writer is studying at a high school in Ireland. She loves to try all things but is a Malaysian at heart

Read more: LIFE OVERSEAS: On a foggy day in New York - You - New Straits Times

No comments: