They say if you haven't been to New York city then you haven't really fully experienced America or rather that your US experience leaves something to be desired if you failed to include the Big Apple in your travel itinerary while you are in the US. Well, I personally got the chance to get a taste of the Big Apple when I went to New York for a short visit with relatives who are now based there just this year and to see for myself what the fuss is all about for the 'city that never sleeps'.
I finished packing my bags fairly quick and soon I was off to the airport to board my flight bound for New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, secure in the knowledge that my aunt and uncle would be waiting at the airport to pick me up as soon as my flight touched down as I had absolutely no idea to to get to where they were staying somewhere in Brooklyn . Spent the majority of my flight alternating between catching precious hours of sleep and reading a little book I bought at a bookstore in the airport filled with interesting facts, figures and footnotes about, well, what else, you guessed right, good old New York City!
After deplaning at JFK International Airport and welcoming hugs from my aunt and uncle at the Arrivals area, off we went to their modest home in one of the suburbs in Brooklyn to drop off my bags, meet my cousins and sit down for a late lunch. I practically was goggle-eyed just looking at the towering skyline of the most populous city in America, it seemed to me that the skyscrapers made up most of the horizon of the Metropolitan Area we were driving through. It is estimated that over 40 million tourists visited New York City over the past 5 years alone and figures are increasing each year. I did a bit of research before taking my flight and found out that www.VacationRentalPeople.com offers fantastic accommodations on apartments, houses and furnished flats in the state of New York and the Big Apple. There are 270 choices for the state and 71 in New York City alone and all these can be rented on daily, weekly and monthly rates at affordable prices.
My Aunt Maria had a grand time pointing out that New York is actually made up of five boroughs-Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens, Staten Island and the Bronx each of which counts as a state county and that most immigrants like themselves usually find homes and settle down in the Brooklyn area. My thoughts were already turning to a visit at the world-famous Coney Island, Luna Park and the Dreamland amusement park complex which I had read about in my little book about NYC on the flight here. I longed to try out the rides and eat my fill of all the delicious hotdogs I could eat at the Boardwalk. Laughingly, Aunt Maria told me that yes, she’d gladly take me and my cousins to Coney Island to sightsee and explore the Boardwalk once I’d unpacked and settled down in their guestroom.
The next two days passed by so quickly while I was in New York that I was terribly saddened when the came time to for me to board my flight and go home. Aunt Maria and my cousins took me on a whirlwind tour of the city and its notable attractions including the Statue of Liberty, Staten Island Ferry, Central Park, Broadway and the Empire State Building. We also took took the famed (or should I say infamous?) New York Subway which operates 24/7 unlike the subway systems in other world cities like Hong Kong and Paris and we even took time to say a short prayer in front of the memorial for the victims of the 9/11 disaster at the Wold Trade Center. Time spent in New York was quite a blast and I had tons of fun exploring the city and spending time bonding with my cousins and relatives there. The Big Apple really lives up to its reputation as ‘the city that never sleeps’ and I am currently counting the days until I can go back to New York City for another much longer and more meaningful trip.