Hey everyone (or, as we say here in America: Hey everyone!)
I’m writing this post from the second floor of a full Megabus, travelling from Philadelphia to Washington DC. Why am I starting from Philly? Originally I had booked an Amtrak train from NYC to DC, to attend the Killam Spring Seminar, but the train broke down and the trip was cancelled. I then joined the mad rat race from the train station to the Megabus loading point. Not to be hyperbolic but it was the most furious 200m dash I’ve ever ran; I only got to the bus first because most of the other runners had wheelie bags. DC here I (still) come!
Come April my Facebook newsfeed was flooded with a torrent of ‘last day of undergrad/class’ statuses. To those of you who are sitting tight waiting to graduate, congratulations! To help pass the time, you can read this blog 😉 (Also Game of Thrones is coming back)
The other thing that April means is that the weather is finally starting to get amazing! The lawn protectors were finally removed – revealing the trimmed, green grass underneath – winter jackets were stored away, and the campus is starting to come alive. So while I’m still very much in exams, I’m making sure to take advantage of these beautiful days.
First Beautiful Day: Chelsea, Meatpacking District and Brooklyn (DUMBO)
Woke up early and made some quick eggs (one had a double yolk, weird.) and grabbed
the first train down to Penn Station. Near this huge transit hub is the Chelsea High Line, formerly a railroad and currently a detached reprieve for downtown urbanite. The mile-long stretch of elevated track features several art installations, and is flanked by graffiti walls.
The High Line leads from 30th to 14th Street, getting me into Chelsea. I spent some time looking through this revitalized area, and enjoyed corn tacos in Chelsea Market. I then took a long route to the subway, passing by the Fashion Institute of Technology Museum on the way.
Grabbing the F Train I headed down to Brooklyn, NYC’s largest borough. It was a surprisingly short ride that brought me right into Brooklyn Heights. The weather was perfect, and I enjoyed exploring the neighbourhood (definitely more hipster than nyc), along with the DUMBO area next to it. New York acronyms are great: SOHO = South of Houston, Tribeca = Triangle Below Canal and DUMBO = Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass; fun fact, the acronym dumbo was given to scare away any well-to-do people and avoid gentrification, though it didn’t work. I then walked over the Brooklyn Bridge back to the city, hung out in the Lower East Side and made my way back home.
Second Day. Met a friend for brunch at Café Frida (Upper West Side), and grabbed a mound of goodness at Lavain. Famous for the best cookie in New York, Lavain is an unassuming spot, only visible by the line of people. It reminded me of the ‘cronut line,’ I guess New Yorkers will really put the time in to get a quality treat.
We ate our cookies in Central Park and I headed home to study for a test and make dinner. At night my friend Taryn and I went to ‘Smoke,’ a pillar of the New York jazz scene conveniently located near campus. Even though we caught the late night shift the place was packed. I’m looking forward to going back to watch my jazz teacher perform with his group on Wednesday!
I’ve been out of the city for six hours and I’m already missing it. Nevertheless, I’m looking forward to reuniting with some of the other Killam fellows, and hearing about how their exchange are/were.
Next week will be my last official blog post, where I’ll try to write about the stuff I discussed in my very first post in January. Until then, all the best!