169 days away
3 km / 2 miles since last post
60,517 km / 37,604 miles total
This morning we headed out, both feeling very tired again. It seems that despite now having a proper, comfortable bed to sleep in, neither of us has had a good night's sleep yet in New York. I'm not sure why.
We got some food first and then took a walk up to Central Park. We considered getting the subway, but by the time we had walked somewhere to get food we were already nearly halfway there so just kept on going.
Central Park covers an area of 843 acres and offers a nice break from the fast pace of the streets of New York City. As we were both feeling tired we knew we wouldn't be able to cover the whole of the Park today, but we headed for the south-west area. Here we took a wander along the pathways, stopping for a nice break by the lake. A little further up is the 2.5 acre landscaped section called Strawberry Fields, dedicated to the memory of John Lennon. The entrance to the memorial is located directly across from the Dakota apartments, where Lennon had lived for the later part of his life. The focal point of the memorial is a circular pathway mosaic of inlaid stones, a reproduction of a mosaic from Pompeii, made by Portuguese craftsmen as a gift from the city of Lisbon. In the center of the mosaic is the word 'magine'. While we were there, a guy calling himself the 'Mayor of Strawberry Fields' was laying some flowers over the top of the mosaic in the formation of a peace symbol. He then began to tell us a very brief history of the memorial and his work here. He said that he has come here to place flowers ever since John Lennon's death in 1980, and nearly every day for the last ten years - that is dedication! A little further down from the mosaic is a plaque which lists the nations which contributed to the building of the memorial.
After viewing the memorial and managing to get a picture, despite the big crowd around it, we headed across the road from the park to have a look at the Dakota Building. This is the building where John and Yoko lived in the seventies, and where apparently she still resides to this day. It was also in the front entrance to the building where John Lennon was shot dead in December 1980.
A walk a little further up from the Dakota took us to the American Museum of Natural History. Initially we were prompted to pay it a visit because 1) it is free with our New York Pass and 2) because it has some dinosaur exhibits. However, once inside it became apparent that there was a lot more to offer. Of particular interest was their Planitarium which was currently showing 'Journey to the Stars' narrated by Whoopi Goldberg. I have always wanted to go to a Planitarium so we paid a little extra so we could see this show.
The planitarium show was starting right away so we headed up and soon got inside and found a seat. I am so glad that after looking forward to being in a planitarium for so long, that I wasn't disappointed. The show was fantastic, well worth the extra money. It gave a brief history of the formation of the sun and the solar system. We thoroughly enjoyed it.
After the planitarium show there were plenty of other space related exhibits to see, including a mini show about the Big Bang, videos on Dark Matter, meteorites etc. Really interesting stuff. There was also an extensive exhibit dedicated to geology with loads of rocks on display, displays about volcanoes, earthquakes etc.
After this we headed upstairs to the Fossil Halls, which includes two huge dinosaur halls. This was an extensive area of exhibits of a variety of extinct creatures also with some fantastic full size fossils including Triceratops and Mammoths to name a couple.
We managed to have a very brief look at their Division of Anthropology section, before the announcement that the museum was about to close came over the speakers. It doesn't ever seem possible to see a whole museum in one day, but we gave it a good go.
After leaving the museum we decided to get the subway back to our hotel. It would be a lot quicker and easier than walking. Just $2.50 for any ride, not bad value.
We got out at Penn Station, close to the hotel, but took a walk first to get something for dinner. We found a nice looking pub and had fish and chips - not as good as British fish and chips but it was ok. Then after dinner we headed back to our hotel room. We intended on trying to sort our accommodation for Vancouver (which is only a few days away) but we were both so tired we shall have to leave it until tomorrow. Time seems to be flying by in New York!