Tuesday, November 20, 2018

To New York... because why not?

23:20 - The bus station

I had gotten to the bus station 2 hours early. My bus scheduled to leave at 23:30. I realized I had forgotten my snow boot covers for my shoes. Thinking I had ample time I went back home to get them. Those easy plans were destroyed by the Bloor train having problems with some signal malfunction at Dundas west station. This resulted in the 20 minute train ride taking 40 minutes.

Dancing to Bus Terminal Music

I got out one station earlier and grabbed the first taxi I could find. Got to the house, picked up my boots, took the same taxi all the way down to the bus station. I still arrived early by an hour.

For the most part I just grabbed an iced tea from the vending machine, sat down, and started to zone out. I was a bit tired.

Then about 10 maybe 15 minutes before my bus arrived this couple started dancing to the boring bus terminal Muzak. At first it was a slowish dance with the odd dip here and there. I took a few photos then left for my bus. Outside I noticed a guy going to Philly taking photos of them with his cell phone. They had upped their dance numbers to a combo of ballet and jazzercise, the girl had taken off her puffy coat to get more movement. Large kicks and hand gestures were now part of the routine. I could have stayed and watched but instead got on the bus.

On the bus, some seats were worn, some were slashed, I was too tired to really care.

01:34 - American immigration

Note: When they ask you for a reason why you’re going to the US do not say “I’m shooting the parade”. Say “I’m photographing the parade.”. Maybe because I was tired, or maybe because I don’t think about these things, I said the former. There was a short uncomfortable silence then I added “with a camera”. Tensions, if they were any, lowered after that.

01:50 - some small bus terminal

Definitely Buffalo

Possibly buffalo given that there are “welcome to buffalo” signs all around. Our bus is being exchanged for another one. The greyhound bus we were in was a bit used and maybe overly loved. The odd slashed seat covers, the grayness of color being bleached by the sun (or scrubbed for germs, who’s to say). The seats were a little worn out. I noticed this when I went to sit down, and some one else’s or maybe multiple people’s bodies had already made a shaped imprint.

Not surprisingly, the wi-fi on the bus didn’t work.

Despite the worn out character of the bus, it was clean, and didn’t smell like pee or vomit, or even lemony cleaning fluid so there’s that. One of the advantages of traveling at night on a Monday, was that the bus was less than half capacity. Everyone got a pair of seats and might have even had space behind or in front as well.

03:00 - onto New York

Got crammed onto Ann express. Is to New York. I suppose that’s nice. Don’t have to stop in Syracuse any more. Also means one less bathroom break. This bus is packed. Every seat has a person in it. I wonder what happened to the other bus?

06:45 - where are we

Woken up to the sound of the bus driving on rumble strips, I was pretty alert. Nothing gets your heart racing more than thinking you’re going to die I suppose. Who the heck needs coffee? I was sleeping soundly, then awake in probably less than five seconds. I looked around the bus and pretty much everyone was awake, looking around. I suppose the sound woke up the driver as well as he corrected for this little mishap. Some people went back to sleep. Me? I was (am up) as I write this now. Might as well take some photos.

It’s all snowy out.

08:00 - the driver needs to pee

The bus driver announced this fact to us and that he was going to pull into a McDonalds, that someone told him about. We drove around trying to find this thing. It didn’t take long. Wherever we were, it was a small town. How long could it have even took?

The McDonalds

By this point I had to get out, my camera bag was on my lap since Buffalo being squashed down by the guy in front leaning his seat into me. It was pretty uncomfortable. I thought about putting the bag on the floor but then I wouldn’t be able to grab my camera should the need arise.  Plus I'd have to get up and wake up the sporty girl next to me.

I wasn't really hungry but I was super dehydrated.  I bought two sauage and egg McMuffins and two bottles of water.  The extra water was for sporty girl.  She stayed in the bus.

A real McDonalds play land.

lining up for a Sausage and Egg McMuffin

11:00 New York City

Exiting the Port Authority Bus Terminal I start to walk down to the Bowery, and look around to take some photos.  No set path, I know I have to go south.  It's been a while since I looked at a map.

"The commuters"

stepping out of the Port Authority

Ralph from the Honeymooners

West 40th and 8th

times square

The naked Cowboy

some old phone technology

the new Magnum P.I.

old SuperB drug store sign

I bought a few bananas

$1 pizza

I also bought some roasted beer nuts

some cool graffiti.

A street with trees

the Mexican statue of Liberty

Is it me or does this door look like some one likes pencils?

random room with a bunch of American Flags

ChinaTown, I recognize the McDoanlds

someone is a fan of dogs

I took this photo because I liked the business of it.  It's something I could only imagine taking in a large city.

dramatic lighting

Things to ponder

more graffiti

a rare chance to see graffiti being made,

15:30 the Bowery... finally

By the time I got to the Bowery I was pooped.  So I checked in and took a nap.  I woke up later to search for food.  The sun had gone down (as you can see from the above photo).  The Bowery has a nice roof patio thing going.  You can sit at one of several chairs/tables or you can walk around look over the brick onto the street.

The rooms are super tiny fitting the small, just less than 6 foot bed, with just enough space for you to open the door and slide in.  That said the place is super clean.  oh and did I mention that I was staying a week for just over $600 US.  That's pretty cheap for New York.  Other places averaged $170 a night with the creme of the crop, the Plaza, going for over $500 a night.

It must be said that I didn't plan any of this trip so far in advance that maybe hotels or transport would be cheaper.  That's the thing with last minute adventures.

right now I can eat the first thing that comes my way, chemicals or no.

"Where to eat, where to eat?"

Do I want bagels?  Not for dinner.

One deep pot hole

random graffiti

I headed out toward Chinatown, I figured it would be a safe bet that something would be open.  Without really thinking about it I ended up going to the China Village restaurant.  It's the same place I visited back in 2016 when I was working on Fast 8.  Same look, same menu, maybe even the same waiter.

Return to the China Village restaurant

I am the only one here.

Beef Brisket on Rice, Super Yummy

The dish was simple, beef brisket on rice.  It was perfect.  I ate the small plate of food feeling satisfied then left back to the Bowery cutting through little Italy.

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