Saturday, June 10, 2017
I may love Christian Bale as Batman and Robert Downey, Jr., as Ironman, but my favorite superhero movie franchise is Guardians of the Galaxy, the fantasy series about a rag-tag group of alien misfits, whose leader, Peter Quill (i.e., “Star-Lord”), was kidnapped from Earth when he was a child. Skilled at saving the galaxy, the Guardians are irreverent, unorthodox and highly lovable. Their cast of characters includes the green-skinned female Gamora, a loudmouthed, gun-wielding raccoon and a warrior tree, who says only one thing: “I am Groot.”
Now part of the Disney universe, Guardians recently got its own ride at Disney’s California Adventure (DCA). The ride involves an elevator that feels like it’s free-falling, so I’ll never go on it. Still, I love all the corollary stuff, including a short “staged” encounter between Quill and Gamora, in front of the Guardians ride, that ends in a dance-off with Groot. We waited in line—for an hour!!—to have our photo taken with Groot, everyone’s favorite Guardian.
Exterior of Mission: Breakout! ride
Quill trying to rouse the crowd, while Gamora looks on unimpressed
Groot and Star-Lord
We haven’t gone on the ride, but everything else is fun, especially if you’re a fan of Groot.
I am bread!: sourdough version of Baby Groot's face--
too cute to eat!
Tim eating churros instead
Sunday, May 14, 2017
Walking the High Line through Chelsea
We rode the subway, saw friends, ate lots of good food, and walked our feet off. It was a wonderful, and much needed, vacation!
Relatively cheap breakfast at the deli across the street from our hotel
New York cheesecake at 11PM—we're on vacation!!
Dirty water dog on 43rd & 8Th Ave. I prefered
eating at Chirping Chicken, a great NYC chain.
Much finer dining at Mario Batali's Eataly at Four World Trade Center
Trying to decide what to eat at Eataly
And, of course, dressing up for the theater
Photo of Lower Manhattan, taken moments before the first plane
crashed into WTC on 9/11
Though never a big fan of the architectural style of the Twin Towers, they, of course, have since transcended any criticism of how they once looked. The new One World Trade Center is much taller and shinier than the original, but it will never loom as large, in my mind and heart, as the towers. Instead, my eyes looked downward to the two reflecting pools marking the footprints of the demolished Center buildings. The pools were somber but beautiful and rimmed with the names of the people who died on 9/11. A simple but powerful tribute.
One World Trade Center
Detail at top
Reflecting Absence reflecting pool, memorializing the former
footprint of one of the Twin Towers
Flowers are placed on the victims' names on their birthdate
Looking at the south pool from above
The first thing you see when you descend the stairs into the
museum are two of the massive tridents that decorated the foot
of the Twin Towers
Several stories tall
Trident base looking very much like a cross
Photo of the remaining tridents (click on image
Remaining underground wall
Remaining column with firefighter messages
"Survivors' Staircase," which over 200 people used to
escape the collapsing building
Part of the TV/radio antenna on the North Tower—six engineers
died trying to keep the antenna operating as long as possible
Ladder 3 firetruck, destroyed by falling debris
"No Day Shall Erase You From the Memory of Time"—the
blue tiles try to capture the color of the 9/11 morning sky
The Oculus: an eagle in flight?
The Oculus across the street from the 9/11 museum (lower
Inside the Oculus
Shoppers and tourists
Looking upward at the spine of the Oculus
Backside of the Oculus, with One World Trade Center behind
John D. Rockefeller, who founded the Standard Oil Company in 1870, is widely considered the richest American of all time. And yet his 40-room residence, located in Sleepy Hollow, 20 miles north of New York City, is relatively understated compared to other historic mansions, like Hearst’s Castle.
Kykuit, from the Dutch word for “lookout,” was home to four generations of Rockefellers, until the death of former U.S. vice president Nelson Rockefeller in 1979. Today the estate is a National Trust for Historical Preservation site maintained by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and operated by Historic Hudson Valley.
The six-story home sits atop 250 spectacular acres overlooking the Hudson River. The grounds, landscaped by Frederick Law Olmsted, designer of Manhattan’s Central Park, are fabulously lush and punctuated by sculptures, old and new. We were not allowed to snap pictures inside the house, but the outside provided plenty to photograph.
Entryway with wisteria climbing up the front wall
View from the front of the house
Bathhouse still stands, though the pools are now gone
More Hudson River
Tour tickets are available at the Philipsburg Manor visitor center,
a short bus ride from Kykuit
Next time, we'll spend more time here
Tulips in bloom