On June 13, 2013 at 10 AM, I started my journey on an American Airlines flight to New York. I had a seat by the window, and the place next to mine was free so it made for a very comfortable trip. I flew right over the Nordkapp. It was a comfortable flight and there was no trouble with my passport or custom control. I got on the Airtrain from the airport and then I caught the subway into Manhattan.
Suddenly, I was standing in the middle of the city. And now I had to orientate myself to the Westside, Eastside, Downtown, and Uptown. The people of New York are very friendly. While I was trying to figure out where I needed to go, a man asked me if he could help me. I always thought New Yorkers were just like the Swiss—arrogant and impolite. After he told me where to go, I hopped into a taxi. I told the taxi driver where I needed to go, but he told me I was so close to my destination that I could walk. However, I ended up walking for half an hour. The hotel was easy to find, and and after I checked in I changed my shoes and headed out to Broadway.
I watched people catch taxis but it seemed very difficult, so I decided the subway was a better option. Back in Switzerland people told me that taking the subway was dangerous, but I survived.The next station was Broadway, so I got out and started to look for my destination. However, Broadway is a very long street in New York. After a few attempts, I found the gallery. Unfortunately, it was late and the gallery had already closed. “OK,” I said to myself, “Tomorrow is another day.”
At a little shop, I bought something to drink and a sandwich. I found a little park I had seen before and decided to sit down and relax. The sandwich was so big that I only ate half of it. I asked myself, “What should I do with the other part?” There were a lot of homeless people in New York, so I had the perfect solution. I saw two older women sitting on the street, and I gave them the other half. They where happy, and so was I. Surprisingly, the homeless people in New York are very polite. When you don’t wish to speak to them, they leave you alone. Very tired, but very happy I decided to go back to my hotel. The highlight of the day was finding the right subway and getting out of the right station on my way home.
I went straight to bed, and slept deeply until 4:50 AM, when I suddenly awoke. I tried to go back to sleep, but I didn’t have a chance. I used this time to plan my day; I had a lot of sightseeing to do. I planned which subways I would need to use after my breakfast. I head to Time Square. I got there at 8 AM. There was no chance of walking the red carpet. Nevertheless it was impressive. My next stop was the Empire State Building. I was at the top in a quarter of an hour. There was no queue because I got there really early. Thank you, jetlag! As fast as I was at the top, I was back at the bottom. I decided to go for a real coffee at Starbucks.
Coincidently, it started to rain. Everyone was wearing rubber boots in all different colors. I was afraid that there was a flood alarm, but nothing happened. I got back on the subway. I headed downtown towards the statue of liberty and Wall Street. Now it really started raining. I was angry because I didn’t have an umbrella with me, so I had to wait under an awning of a small restaurant. Then I saw a man with a little trolley coming towards me. It seemed like he had a cart full of rubbish. He asked me if I wanted to buy an umbrella, but I told him no. After I realized my misunderstanding, I felt very silly. Luckily, another trolley came soon and I bought an umbrella. Now I could walk to the port and take my photo.
I didn’t have enough time to take the ferry to the Statue of Liberty, and because time is money I headed for Wall Street. It was raining so heavily, I decided to wait there. Afterwards, I was hoping to find a thousand dollar note on Wall Street. Unfortunately, there was nothing to find, so I went to the Brooklyn Bridge. I realized that New Yorkers were really friendly people. When I was standing for only ten seconds, someone immediately asked me if they could help me. I was able to get to the Brooklyn Bridge straight away. My feet were hurting and I felt tired, so I decided not to walk across the entire bridge. I went to Chinatown instead.
In Chinatown there were so many restaurants; I couldn’t pick one. There were a lot of beautiful restaurants, but I chose a little one. When I went people looked directly at me as if I had come from the Moon. I got a seat in the middle of the restaurant at a table where the chef was also eating. He kept throwing angry glances at me, so I decided to ignore him. I Ordered a meat, tomatoes, and rice dish. He gave me a spoon, and was surprised I could eat with chopsticks. Now when I left, he smiled at me. On my way to the subway, I saw a violinist on the street and I was surprised that New Yorkers gave him money. He was a really good musician, so I gave him some money as well. Now it was time to go to the gallery. I had a warm welcome when I arrived, and I was happy to see my paintings next to the entrance. I had time to go back to the hotel, shower, and change my clothes. But before I went to the hotel, I had to see Central Park.
What do you think I bought next when I saw this advertisement?
I didn’t stay long in Central Park, but it was amazing to see that much green in the middle of New York. Because riding horses is a hobby of mine, I had to take a picture of one of them in the park. After I went back to my hotel, I took a short nap. Then I was back in the subway, headed for the opening reception at the gallery. A lot of people showed up and I made good connections with other artists. With a lot of cards and many new impressions, I wanted to go back and eat something.
Despite all the warnings, I took the subway once again and as you can see, I survived. I was very tired, and fell asleep within seconds.
Yet again, I awoke at 5 AM. After a shower, I planned my last day. I ate a quick breakfast, and I checked out. With my luggage in tow, I headed for the nearest subway station. I wanted to visit some galleries, and had a tip that I could visit plenty of them on the lower east side. I couldn’t find any of them, so I decided to go to the galleries I had contacted before. In two of the galleries, the responsible people were not there. But I was able to send my documentation to the last gallery. I felt happy about this news, so got a nice lunch in Chelsea. On the way to the restaurant, I had found myself in the middle of a market, where you could buy fresh fruits and vegetables.
Afterwards I headed for the airport. The flight was delayed by three hours, but I slept during the flight so it wasn’t a problem. At last we landed in Zurich, and I could finally go home happy, but tired.