May 25, 2024

Travelling has been a real struggle during the COVID-19 pandemic, especially for those living away from their families. Vacations and family traditions have been broken, causing an emotional outcome for some hardcore travellers. But there are signs that Ontario and the rest of the world is starting to welcome back visitors.

For me, this creates a longing to return to New York City where I had an exciting first visit before the pandemic.

I vividly recall arriving in New York after a long drive. The streets were filled with people and the roads vibrated with the rumbles of cars and car horns. People yelled, people laughed, and right then and there, I knew I was going to have a good time.

I stayed in a small apartment located in Brooklyn. We took the subway daily to Manhattan and explored the city, seeing places such as the 9/11 Memorial Museum and renting bikes that allowed us to adventure around Central Park.

Soaking in the city day by day was one of the most refreshing things imaginable. The smell of the salt water that surrounded the island and the new foods that I couldn’t wait to try tempted me with their smells wafting through the air. It was a great experience and exactly how I imagined New York City.

One of the most memorable experiences was when I attended my first New York Yankee’s game. Tickets were at an excellent price of $25.59 (CAN) for the four of us. During the commercial breaks the groundkeepers took out their brooms and began dancing simultaneously while playing music in the background. The audience cheered and I found myself bent over my chair trying to contain my laughter. It was something I would never have expected.


Central Park across from the Ramble and Lake (image one), indoor Yankee Stadium in 2018 (image two), outdoor Yankee Stadium in 2018 (image three). (Fayth Paul/Spoke Online)

When people describe New York, they usually describe it as a buzzing place filled with kind and caring people. Based on my experience, they are right. When you first see New York, you picture this bright place that draws you at first glance, but the heart is really the centre of the city

There is so much more I wish I could have seen in my four days there. I would have loved to have seen the Statue of Liberty; I only saw it from a distance. I also would have loved to have seen the Brooklyn Bridge from a distance; I only drove across it.

Now that it’s becoming possible to travel again, I think my next trip will be entirely different. As the world recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic, this new experience could still include some wearing of masks and social distancing. This would make for a different kind of visit.

Although my time in New York felt like a breeze in the wind, I’m looking forward to my return trip there because there really is no place like New York.

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