October 2, another significant day has arrived. We are leaving Montreal, our hometown for the last 13 years, behind us for a new adventure.
Our train for NYC leaves at 9:30 am and we want to be at the train station an hour before departure. Thanks to Cira who wakes up at 5:30 am, we certainly will not miss our train. After taking a shower we leave the towels at our host's place, because there is no more space in our luggage. One of the many things we left behind the past few days.
Every on of us has a backpack and a trolley and all that stuff needs to get to the train station. But thanks to Paul our life gets easier as he drives Pablo and all the bags to the "Gare-Central". Tea, Cira and I are taking the Metro for one last time.
9:30 am on a dot, the train leaves the station. It is a strange feeling, I am not sure if it is sadness, happiness, probably both. We are still in some kind of vacation mood, not wanting to realize the truth. Almost like we want to protect ourselves from further thoughts. After all NYC is next. And we don't know how the kids may react. They may be overwhelmed, there may be meltdowns, we do not know, but one thing is sure; NYC is crazy and makes you crazy!
The train ride is beautiful, the weather is sunny which makes the Indian summer so shiny and bright, one last nice memory we will take with us. Cira sleeps 3 hours of the total of 10 hours ride, that makes everything easier and relaxed.
8:20 pm, we arrive at Penn Station in New York City. Pablo and I already planned which transportation we will take to get to the airbnb host. We try to get out on 7th Avenue, and then the crowded streets, the lights, the smell and the rush of this big city hits us, even though we knew it! We feel the vibe of this city rushing through our bodies.
We get a taxi fast. "35 granite street Brooklyn, NY" I explain to the driver. After a crazy taxi ride through the street of this hugh city, we arrive at our destination one hour later. We get settle in fast, we are all very tired.
The next day, October 3rd, should be relaxed and have more possibilities for the kids to play, run around and just let their energy out. We try out a breakfast diner which Google maps points it out, the Paphos Diner! It was OK, but we felt a bit strange as the atmosphere is like in the movies, nothing we know about restaurants in Montreal.
We are located in the Bushwick area of Brooklyn, and for my curiosity I check out house, apartment and rental prices . NYC is really crazy. A 2 Bedroom apartment cost you around 2000$ - 3000$ / month in rent here in Brooklyn, not talking about Manhattan.
We eat lunch at the park, so the kids can play at the playground for the afternoon. Then they had to sit in train for a long time yesterday (some kids rights, no?). That is one of the important thing while travelling with kids to balance out the adult/kids activities. And as simple as possible may sometimes be the best solution.
Friday October 4th. Today it is time to visit Manhattan. We plan to go to Times Square first in the morning and we surprised the kids with a visit to the M&M store. They look very happy and their eyes are shiny, priceless!
I went to the store 6 years ago, when I was pregnant with Tea, so we want to take another picture of me, this time with kids and not just a big round belly :)
Hopping on the red line Subway number 1 south, direction Staten Island Ferry. We always take this ferry because it's free and you get a nice view to Liberty Statue and great view of Manhattan itself. We stay on the island for lunch, and a little relax time for everybody. Heading back to the big apple. The new FreedomTower is not open, so we get just a look from down here. Walk to the subway and boarding the J train back to Brooklyn where we do some grocery. We try to find something healthy in those supermarkets, but heck, it is difficult. We end up buying products to heat up in the microwave, mac & cheese for the kids, soups for the adults. That was the best we could find. I will be able to cook nice meals again when we are back in Switzerland.
Exchanging some emails and text messages with our Couchsurfing friends Amy & Spencer this morning on October 5th. We met Amy & Spencer 4 years ago on our trip to Puerto Rico. We stayed at their place at the time. We just found out that they were moving to NYC last week. Meeting on 110th Street, walking around Central Park, visiting a local Market, and ending up on a playground for the kids we have to say goodbye to them already. They need to catch a flight to Austin TX this afternoon. It was nice to meet them again.
We are heading south to the Rockefeller Center, which is closed. Walking down to Bryant Park on 42nd Street, playing with the water fountain and relaxing.
For diner, we decide to head down to Little Italy and Soho. The kids get a Hot-dog at those corner food stands. It is already 6:30 pm and we take the Subway back home. Before getting home, we stop at Dunkin' Donuts to get some Munchkins for dessert.
Sunday October 6, It is time to get ready, our flight to Zurich is scheduled this afternoon at 5 pm. Eating, relaxing, watching movies for the kids on this rainy morning, packing for us are our activities.
1 pm, we are calling a cap. Well, it is really time to say goodbye to the American continent. Long waits, airport check- in and hopefully having a good flight are our hopes. See you tomorrow in Switzerland.