Photography by Brianne Lee

Photography by Brianne Lee

The Sun Sets and the City Gets Brighter

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Day 3

The morning of day 3 began with a subway ride to Manhattan and a Starbucks run.
Once Meg and I were caffeinated and ready to conquer the day, we made our way to Central Park.
Along the way, we passed the renowned Plaza Hotel. It's red carpet and friendly doorman led us through the revolving door and into, what it felt like, another time period. With its' crystal chandeliers and grand decor, 
it was easy to see how Eloise loved to call The Plaza home. 

The Plaza

Back out the revolving doors, we were only minutes away from the Central Park entrance.
After not only walking a minute in the Park, I came to understand why Central Park is known as New York's backyard.
It truly didn't feel like we were in a city anymore (just as long as my eyes didn't wander up to the skyscrapers).
We strolled down The Mall, stopping occasionally to watch street performers. 

The Mall

We were then led to the Bethesda Fountain and Bow Bridge; a gathering place for New Yorkers and tourists alike.
Considered the heart of Central Park, it is one of the most iconic locations in all of NYC and has frequently been the set for both film and television. (Gossip Girl, Sex and the City and Disney's Enchanted are just a few!)

Bethesda Fountain

Bow Bridge
A look at our phones told us it was time to go our separate ways for the afternoon. Meg headed off to the Lincoln Center to catch a matinee at the American Ballet, while I spent the next couple hours wandering aimlessly through Central Park.

I bought myself a refreshing lemonade iced tea at Le Pain Quotidien, then found a perfect spot in Sheep Meadow to relax and bask in the sun. I could have easily spent the whole day here. With picturesque views of the trees mixed with the skyline, people having picnics, laying out and throwing frisbees, it seemed like the place to be when you wanted a break from the busyness of the city.

Once my shoulders had had enough of the sun, I went in search of some shade. 
I meandered a bit more until I found myself looking at a circular mosaic stone in the ground with the word Imagine.
I was in Strawberry Fields; a living memorial to world-famous singer, songwriter and peace activist, John Lennon.

Even with the numerous tourists gathered here, it was surprisingly the most peaceful part of the park I had been in yet. I took full advantage of this and parked myself on a nearby bench. I spent time in my thoughts and watched as person after person did the peace sign or meditated, while having their picture taken.

After a much needed relaxing afternoon, it was time to meet up Meg.
We explored the Upper West Side a bit in search of food and stumbled upon Nanoosh; a mediterranean restaurant that offers all-natural and organic hummus, wraps, salads and soups. We each had a falafel and hummus wrap with quinoa. Nanoosh proved to be a wonderful discovery!

A spontaneous decision led us back to Midtown, where we bought tickets to Top of the Rock (and another macaroon from Bouchon's!) Making our way up the elevator, we arrived at the top just in time to watch the city transform from sunset to nightfall.

After looking at my pictures from this night, a good friend of mine commented on one saying,
 "The sun sets, and the city gets brighter."
 His description could not have been more spot on.
This city comes alive at night and I felt completely captivated watching it happen.

Once we tired ourselves out from the hundreds (yes hundreds) of pictures we had taken, it was time to venture back down to the streets of Manhattan. We found the subway and headed back to the apartment for some much needed zzz's!


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