Shoving off from Atlantic City towards NY Harbor at the crack of dawn (literally) on June 30th was a bit foggy but this was going to be a longish day for us so we wanted to get a-goin’ bright and early.
Our day was sunny but cool and mostly uneventful…until we approached the Sandy Hook area outside of NY harbor. We spotted what looked and sounded to be areas of rainfall in spots all around us for about a quarter of a mile. Then we noticed dolphins-several pods of them (are they called pods?) in a wide circle around the boat. We realized then that what we thought was rainfall were actually schools of fish bubbling to the surface.
After watching it all for a few moments, we heard a “spoof” sound and Tom hollered “whales!” We saw their “spout” of misty water and watched their tails break the surface. We could only make out two of them, but there may have been more. As this was our last hurrah in the ocean for awhile, we were soooo excited to see them.
As we approached New York Harbor, the waterway became busy with commercial traffic and a few tour boats headed to see Lady Liberty. She is quite a sight to behold.
We made it safely to Liberty Landing Marina on the hottest day we’ve encountered in months and on Thursday our special guests arrived. Our favorite daughter and her boyfriend Brendan flew all the way from California to spend the holiday weekend with us. They arrived early in the evening in a rain storm.
The next day we were able to take them on a cruise up the East River. You know the one. The river where they find all the bodies in the NY cop shows. We didn’t find any that day.
That afternoon we took a short walk to the ferry to visit Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty.This was another bucket list item of mine but I’m rather confident that Tom, Hannah and Brendan found it all interesting.
Saturday we decided to check out the 911 memorial. It had been cloudy with rain off and on the whole weekend and Saturday was no exception. We took a very short ferry ride across the river, hopped off and walked all of a block and a half to the memorial site. It really is something to behold.
The 911 museum was open so we decided to spend some time wandering through it as well. I’m just going to pause here and say that walking through this beautiful memorial was almost too much emotionally for me. The footprint of the north tower is on display. There are steel girders bent backwards, parts of the tv tower from the very top of the building, one of the staircases from where they pulled survivors, a crushed and mangled fire truck, so many personal articles and random papers from offices as well as airplane parts.
There was a replay of the Today Show from that morning with the breaking news, voicemail recordings from people in the towers and people on the planes as well as recordings of people’s reactions around the world. I don’t intend to go on and on, but it made an impression and brought back the emotions of that day and I was not expecting that.
I will just end this portion with stating that everyone should visit this museum. It’s a true testament of the human spirit.
With the somber part of the day under our belts, we took a last minute detour to immerse ourselves in some Van Gogh art on the east side. This is a one-of-a-kind experience that I just know will catch on due to the concept. I don’t really know how to describe it except to say that we sat in a room with many other people while Van Gogh paintings were projected along the walls and floor. Each painting morphed and moved around the room so that we felt as if we were inside the paintings. Quite like the virtual amusement rides you find at universal Studios.
Fun fact: Did you know that in Amsterdam they pronounce Van Gogh as “Van Gock”?
Our 4th celebration started out with a cool, sunny day—finally! We ate brunch at the restaurant and watched as people began to funnel into the park in preparation for the fireworks later on that night. We were able to watch right from the flybridge. Why is it that the photos never, ever capture the sparkle quite like being there?
Hannah and Brendan took off very early the next morning for their long flight back to LA. It was so good to have them aboard and to meet Brendan. I hope we didn’t scare him off with our weirdness.
We had just a couple of hours to “turn the room” before welcoming our next special guests. Kevin and Ginger Rash.
Coming next: Our trip up the beautiful Hudson River