Max was the name of the horse that took us around in a carriage complete with thick red blanket through Central Park late last night. His irish driver, thick with fresh from Dublin "specially for tourists" accent, gave us a very informative and detailled tour of the park and its surrounds and history while the themometer dropped to six degrees - nice and chilly - and the full moon shone ever so brightly overhead.
I could only imagine the cold if this tour was taken in February - brrrr - however what a great job it would be to take tourists through the park every night. It was just beautiful!
Poor Max - how he struggled to drag us through the streets of the Park. I shouldnt have eaten that burger - Max just wasnt coping with the extra weight of the rock hard beef pattie. Thank god I didn't eat any cheese or bacon - Max would have keeled over!! :-) If any of you have eaten the cheese and the bacon in the US, you will know why. Not pleasant - they must have another version of pig and cow over here because their dairy and pork products are revolting. (No offence intended - just my opinion - I've been spoilt by living in Australia all my life)
Now I had actually walked down and back from 34th to 59th twice yesterday. Great walking - other than being dragged along through the park by poor old Max. Walking is easy - New York Streets are a great system except Broadway - it stuffs everything up - so say the locals. Oh and they don't like Times Square - they shake their head and mumble - you mean 42nd Street!!!
Just to give you an idea of distances here. I am staying in the New Yorker Hotel on 34th Street. Imagine it is my house on Sumner Road. Where the pub is - thats where Madison Square Garden is. Where the Caltex service station is - thats where Empire State Building is. Mount Ommaney Shopping Centre is Times Square and Cooranga Street, Jindalee is where Central Park is. I have decided to walk most places after my monthly $89 Metro Card was eaten at the turnstile. I'm not holding a grudge however I'm happy to walk rather than play the pokies and lose while purchasing tickets at the Subway. If they add some purple carpet, bad covers bands, bright neon lights and some free drinks, I may reconsider. :-)
I really appreciate Brisbane - how lucky are we? New York is fabulous - however, we truly have a wonderful life in Brisbane. It takes a contrast with one of the world's greatest cities to realise this good fortune. Even our stinking hot summers are worth appreciating!! I love being in New York however I am sooo looking forward to coming home in a month. We have a beautiful life in Brisbane!
Taking the return ride back to the Park in the horse and carriage, we ventured out near the New York Opera house and it was here that we witnessed the first real episode of New York road rage. One taxi was exiting from the side and the one behind him sped up to cut him off. Standard Brisbane traffic operations right? Well the chinese dude driving the cut off taxi, jumped out of the cab, smashed the front of the other taxi with his fists, yelled and screamed, kicked and punched and then got back in his cab with that ever familiar phrase" Welcome to New York". I love how they use this for everything. :-) Then he proceeded to sit in his cab blocking off the rest of the traffic while all the cabs around him just sat there and honked their horns as Max kept his head down and simply clip clopped off in the distance.
Yup makes the Coronation Drive peak hour traffic look very polite. :-) If there were no cabs and only horses like Max - I wonder what road rage would look like then?