Wednesday, July 8, 2015

A post New York City reflection day 1

Leading up to our NYC trip, I'm not sure exactly I was thinking. Maybe I was preoccupied with packing, but then the day before I came down with a sinus migraine which left me in a position to mope or to lower my expectations. I did a little of both. Nothing was really planned for our trip except we had a way in and out of the city and a place to stay while there. We knew we were going to use public transit while there and we had borrowed an awesome compact double stroller system for the kids, so we did. We had spent the better part of the year learning about cities, and so it just felt like we needed to go and be in the city of cities, at least as my kids know it.

Here we go, go, go on an adventure!
Was I nervous about bringing my little family to a an almost unfamiliar city? Of course. My number one fear was losing one of the little people. Which honestly made no sense because in Manhattan where the sidewalks are overcrowded, the kids automatically such close by in a stroller or a carrier. And probably part of that was Keith and I wanting them to do so. Our main rule of the city was to hold a hand or be in the stroller, the kids totally complied. But goodness does Manhattan have a lot of people! It made me think how much space we really have in Cleveland.

So we got to the city thru Penn station on Amtrak. It was a pretty fun trip, and probably the only time on land that I've gone 120mph. Coming out of Penn station, we were a bit lost. Arriving underground, we had no bearings and since it's Penn station, there were people everywhere, it made us a bit frazzled and so as soon as we did make it out and got our directions straight, I beelined the kids and Keith the luggage to the hotel. I think the initial lost feeling really screwed with my head for a bit, but at the hotel we regrouped and we actually had a very nice, very spacious hotel room for midtown Manhattan. If you ever stay in the city, I recommend The Herald Square Hotel. The staff was very accommodating and friendly.

That evening we went out and walked around our surrounding area, around the Empire State building, into a three story H&M to buy the kids socks. Because somehow in the packing, the children's socks were left behind. I had some great paella at a small street vendor in Herald Square, and then we walked up to Bryant park where they were setting up to have a movie on the lawn in front of the library. The boys rode a carousel and then we finished the night with ice cream in Koreatown. A good first day in the city.

The guy that does Humans of New York, does a pretty great job giving a portrait of the individuals there. There is so much humanity packed in the city, so many stories and we all matter. We are all made in the image of God, and I felt like in this city, the flare, the beauty of the individual came out. While I'm sure they have their own battles with trying try fit in, it seemed like there was less of that and more of people trying to stand out. And I wonder if that comes from there being so many people there, that one feels like you have to make your mark to be noticed or cared about. This may be true, but to me it emphasized how amazingly awesome God is to create humanity in such a way that we can all be so different in our expressions of self and yet we are all children of Him too. One big crazy, diverse family of humanity.

Part 2 tomorrow.

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