Thursday, June 9, 2016

Katelyn's Graduation Trip Day 7

Today was a busy day. The weather was sunny and mild. After breakfast we walked to the Empire State Building. We rode all the way to the 102nd floor observation deck, with a stop at the outdoor observation deck on the 86th floor. The skies were clear and we had a great view of New York.
Empire State Building

Windy at the top

Nice view on a clear day

Next we cabbed to Battery Park and rode the Ferry to Liberty Island. We got some good pictures and Katelyn agreed to do the traditional pose. We also were able to ascend to the pedestal level of the statue with nice views of New York harbor.
Ferry ride to Liberty Island

Famous Lady

Famous pose

We took the ferry back to Battery Park and walked to the 9/11 Memorial and Museum site in lower Manhattan. The memorial is a peaceful tribute to the lives lost that day. The museum is a somber reminder of the horror and loss experienced that day.
9/11 Memorial

9/11 Memorial

9/11 Museum

When we completed our visit to the museum we caught a cab to St. Patrick's Cathedral in Midtown Manhattan. We arrived before the published closing time, but were not permitted inside due to a graduation event being held there. We walked over to the nearby Rockefeller Center and saw the famous Atlas statue.
St. Patricks


We had dinner at a Chipotle not far from Rockefeller Center, and then walked to the NYC Carlo's Bakery. It was packed with people but we waited our turn and bought some delicious cupcakes and brownies to bring back to the hotel for our late night dessert.
Carlo's Bakery

Busy place

This is the last entry. Tomorrow we have to pack up and go home.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Katelyn's Graduation Trip Day 6

It rained today so we stayed in and just enjoyed a relaxing day in the hotel. We had a late lunch at the hotel restaurant, then returned to the room to get ready for our evening Broadway show. The rain stopped so we walked down Broadway to the theater. We had great seats and enjoyed the performance of Wicked immensely. The theater was full and everyone gave the cast a well deserved standing ovation. We did a little souvenir shopping on the walk back and stopped for a post show dessert in the hotel lobby.

Ready for the show

Lobby decorations

Yummy post-show dessert

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Katelyn's Graduation Trip Day 5

Janet and Katelyn wanted Nutella crepes for breakfast and we were literally right next to the Reading Terminal Market, so I walked over and got them. I myself opted for a more traditional breakfast in the hotel. After checkout, we went to Independence Park and signed up for a Ride The Ducks tour. We got on the next tour leaving and had a fun ride around Philadelphia with an entertaining guide. The ducks are amphibious and take you for a short ride on the Delaware river as well. After the Ducks tour we packed into the car for the drive to New York.

Ride the Ducks

We dropped off the car in New York and checked in to our hotel which has a view of Times Square. We went out exploring and walked to Central Park where we took a pleasant carriage ride through the park. It was a nice way to enjoy the park and see more than if we walked. After the carriage ride we walked to Rockefeller Center and had dinner at an outdoor restaurant in Rockefeller Plaza. After dinner we returned to the hotel and had dessert in a lobby restaurant.
Times Square view from hotel
Central Park carriage ride
Rockefeller Plaza outdoor restaurant

Monday, June 6, 2016

Katelyn's Graduation Trip Day 4


Today we started with breakfast in the Concierge Club of the hotel, then took a cab to the Independence Visitor Center to check in for a Segway tour. After a brief but adequate training session, we headed out on Segways for a 2 hour tour of Philadelphia's old city. Kate rode like she's been doing it all her life. After riding all morning we were ready to do some touring on foot. First we visited the Liberty Bell. Then we walked to the Love sculpture in Dilworth Park. Next we went to the Reading Terminal Market for lunch. One of the oldest public markets, the Reading Terminal Market is in what once was the terminal for the Reading Railroad. Does Reading Railroad sound familiar? I'll give you a hint: Reading, Pennsylvania, B&O, and Short Line. Inside, Katelyn found a vendor of genuine French crepes, so we had our lunch there. Katelyn enjoyed a Nutella and banana crepe. After lunch it was time for our guided tour of Independence Hall where the Declaration of Independence was created and signed. Our tour guide was both informative and entertaining and it made for an interesting tour. We passed a number of Indego bike sharing racks during our walking today, and after we completed our Independence Hall tour we decided to rent a couple of the bikes and ride to see the "Rocky" statue near the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The three mile ride was fun, but included a few hills that in 85 degree sun wore out an old out-of-shape guy like me. So we checked our bikes back in at the Indego station near the Museum and after taking the obligatory "Rocky" pose photo in front of the statue, we took a cab back to the hotel.

Liberty Bell
Segway savvy
Say, can you tell me where to find
the Reading Terminal Market?
Declaration signing room
Independence Hall

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Katelyn's Graduation Trip Day 3

Today was a travel day. After breakfast we hung out in the hotel until checkout time. Then we picked up a rental car and debated whether to try and take in an additional Boston point of interest or head for Philadelphia. Since it was raining the consensus was to go to Philly. The trip took much longer than we anticipated due to several factors not the least of which was the weather. At one point it rained so hard we couldn't drive faster than about 20 mph on the expressway. Another time we drove through fog so thick you couldn't see more than a couple of car lengths. We stopped for lunch at an Au Bon Pain in a mall not far past Hartford and did a little shopping while we were there too. Katelyn got a new hat, and we bought some macarons to sample. The rain let up shortly before sunset and we were treated to a rainbow. 

The only picture we took today

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Katelyn's Graduation Trip Day 2

Boston Sightseeing

We got up early (7:30) today and Katelyn and I went to the hotel restaurant for breakfast. We are staying in a nice Marriott Renaissance right near the harbor (thanks Jennifer and Paul for the Friends and Family rate). We had omelets and French toast, and brought eggs back to the room for Janet. After breakfast we took a cab to the harbor and headed out on a 3 hour whale watch cruise. It was foggy on the water with limited visibility and sadly we didn't see any whales. Still it was a nice boat ride, and the guides did their best to educate us about whales even if we weren't seeing them.
After we returned to the hotel, we went out sightseeing. We visited the U.S.S. Constitution (Old Ironsides), and a nearby WWII destroyer, the Cassin Young. From there we walked following the Freedom Trail to Paul Revere's house and toured that. We continued along the Freedom Trail and saw Faneuil Hall, the old State House, the site of the Boston Massacre, and the historic Haymarket.

Ultimately we walked all the way back to our hotel, and had a nice dinner at a restaurant nearby where we all shared some crab cakes as an appetizer. According to Katelyn's step counter, we walked over 12000 steps today!

Foggy Whale Watch

Whale watchers

Old Ironsides

All Hands On Deck

Oops, caught!

Shoulda worn high heels

Paul Revere House

Friday, June 3, 2016

Katelyn's Graduation Trip Day 1

Travel Day
We got to the airport with plenty of spare time. Thanks Ginette for driving. We also got through security quickly partly because Katelyn's boarding pass had TSA PreCheck so we all got to use the fast lane. We had time to relax in the United Club a while before going to the gate. The flight was slightly delayed taking off but otherwise uneventful. We used miles to book upgraded seats so we flew comfortably. The distance to the hotel was short but the cab ride was long due to some closed lanes in the tunnel under the harbor.