Ahh, the last day in NYC.
We had to be out of our hotel rooms by 10, making sure that all our bags were put in to our lecturer’s room in order to prevent us hauling them around the city. The coach was picking us up at 5, meaning we had to be back at the hotel at around half 4. So…6 and a half hours in New York to do whatever we wanted.
We went out for breakfast first. Jess and I went to McDonald’s while Heather and Ben went to the deli. We were in there for about half an hour before deciding to go and find what the hell happened to the other two. We found them upstairs in the deli with quite a number of other people on our course.
After chatting for a bit we split in to separate groups with Jess, Heather, Ben, Tala and I heading to Times Square. Ben needed to change a jacket he got at a what I’m just gonna call knock-off Ralph Lauren store. The polo shirts there seemed pretty good so I got one for my friend as a birthday present.
We made our way to Fifth Avenue for a bit more shopping when it started to rain. Tala, Ben and Heather decided to go back to the hotel because their feet hurt (they’d been walking for stupid hours over the past few days so I didn’t blame them), but Jess and I carried on because there was no way we weren’t going to go mad sitting around the hotel doing nothing for four/five hours.
Our route of Fifth Avenue took us first to Build-A-Bear because we are very mature grown-ups. I kept “Aww”ing at the different clothes for the bears they had, particularly the Avengers and Star Wars clothes. Jess got herself a Toothless from How To Train Your Dragon, something I’ve got already. Downstairs was the party area as well as a “Build your own Dinosaur” section. This part of the store also included Disney princess clothes. Do you ever get envious of the costumes available to teddy bears?
We’d walked past St. Patrick’s Cathedral before on the walk back from Central Park a few days previous, but this time we actually went inside. It was relatively busy, but New York isn’t exactly sparsely populated. We lit a candle each at the main altar and walked around it. The cathedral was undergoing some restoration work, meaning that there was a lot of scaffolding about.
After going to the cathedral we decided to take a look at the Apple store we’d seen. It’s a large glass cube that has an elevator and stairs leading underground to the main store. In all honesty, we mostly sat on their chairs to have a rest and maybe borrow some of their internet.
Next stop was a large toy store that stood just a few feet away from the Apple store. They sold some ridiculously expensive toys (I saw a tall toy unicorn for about £800). On the ground floor is the only place in the world where you can design your own Muppet. I daren’t wonder how much it was.
We treated ourselves to a cute top each in Abercrombie and Fitch before heading back. This was around 3 o’ clock and figured we wouldn’t get too bored if we slowly made our way back to the hotel.
After getting some t-shirts from Hooters and bumping in to Heather, Ben and Tala we went in to a small pizza place where they did huge slices for about $3. There was an attractive guy in there who we ended up nicknaming “Italian Liam Hemsworth”. We then headed back in to the hotel and up to the third floor. We could have stayed in the lobby and been sociable, but the lobby didn’t have Wi-Fi (oh, shush).
From then on out the day wasn’t entirely eventful. We grabbed our bags from the hotel room and put our breakables (cameras, laptops etc) inside our hand luggage and I saw a girl have a bit of a meltdown because she couldn’t find her passport (she found it in the end), then we got on the coach to the airport.
On the coach there we were in some traffic and noticed that there was a person in the car next to us receiving ridiculously long texts, so took fascination in the prospect of him being in trouble with his missus.
Ben and I were sat at the back and so could see the cars behind us. Some people noticed us and did some gang-looking sign to us, to which Ben slowly closed the curtain. We also drove past the largest graveyard I have ever seen. There were countless headstones that seemed to go on for miles.
The rest of the journey went a bit like this:
Airport. Queuing for check-in. Taking the piss out of people who elect to wear sunglasses inside at 6.30pm. Moaning about queuing. Worrying that our bags would be too heavy. Forgetting that the Americans use pounds and not kilos. Security. MASSIVE BODY SCANNERS. Duty-free shopping. A woman pointing to a woman in a bikini on a magazine cover and telling me it was disgusting. Metaphorically biting my tongue. Sitting. Playing a memory game on an interactive wall. Getting free Krispy Kreme doughnuts because Halim is a babe.
We walked to our gate and Ben and I saw some conveyer belts so stood on them and must have gone around on them a good three times before getting off and sitting down with the rest of the group, where we chatted and looked through the pictures we’d taken the night before.
They called us to board and Ben had the absolute delight of sitting next to me. Tala got a whole row to himself until someone wanted to move seats. What was nice was that there was no one sat behind me so I could lean my chair back without worrying about squashing someone’s legs. There was no one sat on the other side of me either, so could happily go to stretch my legs whenever I wanted.
We were seated on the plane ready to leave for about an hour and a half. Ben was halfway through Captain America: The Winter Soldier and I was happily sat watching the rest of The Imitation Game, that I started to watch on flight to New York.
The captain of the plane said to us on the tannoy “I’d like to be able to tell you that we’re going to be moving soon, but the weather’s bad and there’s lots of planes in the air, but we’ll get going as soon as possible”. We remained stationary for a bit before ever so slowly moving forward. To start with, I was worried that we were moving back to where we started and that they were going to tell us the flight was cancelled, but we were eventually on our way. The first twenty minutes were very turbulent, but soon enough we were on our shorter flight back to the UK.
Good night, New York.