Empire State of Mind

One of the great perks of my new job is that I got to travel to New York City to see the Meredith Office and meet all of the lovely people there. The only other time I had been to New York was in college and there was a blizzard the day we went. One of my close friends (Jamie) went to Yale, and I went to visit her the winter of our freshman year of college. Yale is located in New Haven, CT, which is only a short train ride into New York City. By the time we got there it had already started to snow and by about 5pm the city had basically shut down. For those of you that have been to NYC, can you imagine absolutely no taxis on any street? It was a ghost town. Needless to say I didn’t get a very good glimpse of what NYC was like. I was so excited to go again and actually have a chance to tour the city a bit. I was only there for 2 days/nights though so I had to make sure I made the most of it.

After riding on the smallest plane I’ve ever been on (I was incredibly nervous the whole 2 hour flight), I got into NYC on a Tuesday night. I got in a cab and headed toward my hotel in Midtown (I think).  I am clueless when it comes to NYC neighborhoods. When I was checking into the hotel, the concierge let me know that I had a “complementary upgrade to the penthouse suite”. Um, awesome! I got upstairs to my room and walked into a massive 3-room hotel suite. Allie (my best friend from junior high) lives in NYC so she came downtown to stay with me for the two nights that I was there. One great thing about the penthouse suite in the hotel was the huge porch that overlooked NYC. Since I was in the middle of a lot of buildings (a lot taller than my hotel) it was hard to see a lot, but below is a picture of the view. It was still pretty cool.

The hotel even had a continental breakfast for Allie and I to enjoy while we stayed there. On the first night we didn’t do much at all. Drank some wine and watched TV. The next day we both went to work and I got to see the Meredith offices. They were very new and modern compared to the Chicago offices. It was definitely great to finally put faces to names that I speak to on a daily basis. After work some coworkers and I went to a nice Mexican restaurant right by the office called Dos Caminos. It was really good and we had great margaritas! I met up with Allie afterwards and we did a little bit of exploring. We attempted to visit the 9/11 Memorial since it was right after the 10-year anniversary. However, they had everything completely blocked off and this is all that we saw.

Yea, pretty disappointing. They still have a lot of construction going on around the Memorial so I think they just aren’t letting many people go in until everything is finished. Right in the middle of all the construction is the new World Trade Center building. They are actually further along than I expected. It will be massive when it’s finished. Below is a picture (not a good one) of the new WTC. All of the workers you see below were crazy about not letting you get even close to peeking in the fences. I even got yelled at for walking in the street!

We did get to walk right next to the Firefighter Memorial though. That was pretty cool to see.

I was a little bummed we didn’t get to see the 9/11 Memorial so I decided I wanted to go see something that I knew would not be restricted in any way. Times Square! I had been there on my previous trip, but it just wasn’t a good experience since there was literally no one there. Allie and I walked around and even went into a few stores – M.A.C. (the make-up) and the M&M store. It was pretty cool to actually see everything all lit up and people walking around. That is definitely a great place to do some people watching.

All in all it was a great trip to see Allie, visit the NY Meredith office and tour NYC a bit. I definitely want to go back just to visit her for a few days on a weekend and go out in NYC. Hopefully I will get the chance sometime soon!