West Baden Springs Indiana

West Baden Springs Indiana
Inside of the AMAZING West Baden Springs Resort in Indiana.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

simit sarayi for Breakfast in New York City

We stopped in to simit sarayi for breakfast one morning.  Man, do I hope this concept catches on.

This is a very clean and neat place to stop for a meal.

Check out the bottom photo.  'Nuff said.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Fraunces Tavern in New York City

The Fraunces Tavern in New York was very high on our list on this visit.  We really wanted to spend some time at this very historic place.

This little building served as a headquarters for George Washington!  And now, you can go there and have a meal, and explore their museum!

The place is still a functioning place to get food and spirits.  I enjoyed a very nice three cheese grilled cheese and tomato soup here.  Our food had good flavor and it was very filling.  I think my meal was around $16, which I thought was very reasonable for this area, and venue.  I know, you are thinking $16 for grilled cheese and soup.....  But this meal was really nice.  AND it was in the Fraunces Tavern.  I was very happy with it.

The restaurant/bar is on the first floor of the tavern, and it is cozy, with a very old feel.  We enjoyed just hanging out and eating in this area for a bit. 

The main attraction items are upstairs in the museum area.  I think it was $7 or so tour the second and third floor museum.

In this area, there are lots of cool, historic things to see.  There is a room where Washington had his "farewell to his officers".

Pretty much all of the early big names in politics passed through here....  and the building still has odd history attached to it....  a bomb went off here in 1975.

The museum has an amazing collection of art and relics too, mostly relating to POTUS #1.  I had to see a piece of one of Washington's teeth and a clip of his hair.

Check out the photos!

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Seaglass Carousel in New York

The Seaglass Carousel was very close to some of the other things we wanted to see in New York, so we swung by.  Here are a few photos!

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Castle Clinton in New York City

We walked over to Castle Clinton in Battery Park after visiting the One World Trade Center.

Castle Clinton is part of the National Park Service, and it does have a lot of history.  Most notably, it was used as an immigration station before Ellis Island.

It has had many other uses too, including acting at one time as an aquarium. 

I think most people go there today because boats go from there to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

Monday, December 25, 2017

One World Trade Center- New York City

We arrived in New York early on a Thursday.  We found ourselves right by the new One World Trade Center and decided that this might be a great time to go to the top!

On our last trip, we did the "Top of the Rock" tour at Rockefeller Center.  That was fun... and really going to the top of one of the tall buildings in New York is probably enough for most lifetimes..... but One World Trade Center is special.

Also on our last trip, we did the overwhelmingly emotional 9/11 Memorial Museum...  which is sort of the sibling attraction to the One World Tower.

We got to the World Trade Center and there was no line.  I asked a guy working there about it and he said that we really came at a good time, and that, after we bought our tickets, we would pretty much be going up to the top.  It was $74 for the two of us, then we took an escalator down to a security area where we went through the normal NY tourist scan stuff. 

We next took an elevator to the top where the sides of the elevators were screens that made it appear as if the area were being built up over time as we went to the top.  It was a cool effect.

  When we got off of the elevator, we were placed in a room showing a video on the trade center.  At the end of the video, the screen lifted showing a skyline of New York.  This was a very cool way to start things off.

They did make us listen to a 1 minute live commercial about an ipad type of device we could rent for $15 showing us info on the buildings we would see.  I did see some people utilize this.

The observation area was actually very comfortable and open.  Again, this might be because we came on an uncrowded Thursday morning, but there was plenty of space for everyone. 

There was a nicely stocked gift shop at the observation level, but it felt very bland.  I usually pick up a patch or some postcards, but I didn't here.

We did enjoy the views though, and we were glad that we finally made it to the One World Trade Center.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Subway System in New York City

On our last trip, we used the hop on hop off tourist busses to get around New York.  This time, we decided to utilize the subway! 

We bought Metro Cards that allowed unlimited use over 1 week.  It was around $33 each for the cards.

And we ended up using the subway a lot.  We had a good time, and enjoyed the experience. 

Just like with the rest of the city, the subway felt very safe and pleasant.  Everyone uses it.

We did have one very ODD moment in the subway tunnels.  We were going to catch a train, and rounded a corner going towards it.  Well, as we rounded that corner, there was a lady.... lets just say going to the bathroom.  She was being as hidden as possible, which wasn't very much.  We tried to ignore her though she did say she was sorry as we passed by.  We did notice others (families with children) having to pass her too as they went to and from trains and exits.

BUT, let me stress that ALL of our other experiences in the subway were great.  People seemed pleasant and happy.

Friday, December 22, 2017

Random Thoughts on Friday

I was able to go see the new Star Wars:  The Last Jedi movie this week.  I won't throw out my opinion of the film (because...  who cares?), but I did notice something that I thought was kinda cool.

Did anyone else pick up on the battle at the end and it's similarities to a certain fight that went down in San Antonio in 1836?  Thank goodness the film did not end like the Battle of the Alamo, but they sure were channeling that legendary confrontation!  You had a small, ragged group forced into a small fort with no real escape options, against a massive army.  AND, Kylo Ren mimics the spirit of Santa Anna, saying something about no quarter, no prisoners.

Did I miss anything?  I would love to hear from anyone else who picked up on any Last Jedi/Alamo connections.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

New York City 1993

I know I have mentioned it here before..... but back in the 90s you would take a trip somewhere and buy a couple of disposable cameras.  That was good for about 50 pictures.  You were good to go.  Nowadays, I usually take well over 1000 photos on my phone on a long roadtrip.

AND, way back then, you had more to worry about with your pictures.  You really had to carefully make sure you were getting that one perfect photo.  You couldn't take 20 pictures of the same thing, and then look at them immediately on your phone or camera like you can now.  Even then, you couldn't be sure that you got a good photo.

THEN, you had to take your photos somewhere to get developed.  That was a pain, but man was it exciting!  It was so much fun getting your pictures back and seeing how they turned out!

Well, here are some photos from my 1993 trip to New York City- in all of their glorious inferiority.

I am going through a box of my old photos and trying to scan them all in.  I may have more later.

So, here is a brief explanation of the pics-

The top ten photos are all from the USS Intrepid.  Obviously way before they got the space shuttle.  This was a fun place to explore, and I thought the stealth bombers were very cool.  Please note my thumb screwing up a couple of the pictures.  I am not proud of this.

The next few photos are pretty random Time Square ones.  Always cool seeing those pics.  There are a couple of bad ones I took in front of the Harley Davidson Café one evening.  I do remember having a nice meal there.  I also remember seeing a guy sleeping on the side walk as a limo dropped off models at the same time as I ate my burger.  You had the homeless and the very privileged right beside each other.

Down a bit are a couple of pictures outside of Grand Central Station.  Then, there are a couple of photos from my hotel room at the Grand Hyatt.

I took a couple of picture of the clock face at FAO Schwartz.

The last couple of photos are of the Statue of Liberty from a distance.

When I came across these older photos, I was looking hard, hoping that I may have caught the Twin Towers or something else cool somewhere in the skyline, but I didn't. 

I wouldn't go back to New York City for more than a couple of decades after this (other than switching planes a couple of times).  I remember thinking that it was rough, and intimidating at the time (and, I was younger and more naïve).

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Winter Village at Bryant Park in New York City

Very close to our hotel was the Bryant Park Winter Village.  We had a blast in this area!

I have been to many pop up Christmas mall/festival/flea market type places, and I enjoy them all.  This one was exceptionally huge and all of the sellers seemed to be of great quality.

The vendors were inside of comfortable little glassed in temporary stores.  Plus, there were lounges, and other areas to go into.

The center piece of the village was a huge skating rink!  Obviously, a LOT of work went in to setting this up!

Since my wife was not with us on this trip, I took photos of some things I thought she might like and sent them to her.  I ended up getting one of those cool gold leaf necklaces for her and she loves it!

There were interesting food vendors here too, but we ended up never sampling anything.  Don't worry though, we ate good the whole time we were in the Big Apple!