Hey guys, here we are in New York! We flew in on Monday June 2nd after waking up at crazy o'clock and getting a cab to the airport. The flight was surprisingly easy actually; the time passed really quickly and we even had a comedian for a pilot. And I quote, "The button above you on the left is your personal reading light, and the button the right releases the hounds." Oh and we can't forget, "Please give your full attention to my girlfriend and ex wife as they go through the safety procedures." With Jack Dee in the cockpit I was assured that the flight would be as smooth as he was. Arriving at JFK was a weird experience. It finally felt like we were backpacking rather than just vacationing; we had no one to pick us up, no way of knowing how to get to our hotel, and a very small budget. In the end we decided to get a bus that took us to Port Authority Bus Terminal in the city and then we walked for a while. My case is 20k and I was carrying hand luggage containing a laptop (my shoulder is actually BRUISED from the weight of it- seriously) so the walking only lasted a few blocks before hailing a cab and finally getting to our hostel on West 97th and Broadway in the Upper West Side. Oh and by hostel, I mean hole. When we got to our room (72H- the H stands for hell) the door scraped the bottom of the bed as we opened it. I'm seriously not exaggerating. Sure we had a tiny little prison toilet, but the lack of a sink made that a pretty unhygienic situation. And it was like an oven. The little window let no air in whatsoever. Anyways, we went down to reception to throw some sort of champagne backpacker diva fit and ask for a fan, and they changed our room- to one that is MUCH bigger. It's still most definitely a room in a hostel, there's no denying it, but the window is so much bigger, and instead of a toilet there's a big cubby hole in the wall the size of a wardrobe that we've put our bags in and basically created more room. We can actually walk around this one, it's heaven in comparison to 72Hell.We spent most of Monday settling in and exploring. Being poor like we are, we didn't want to get another taxi on our first day, so opted to walk a grand total of ONE HUNDRED AND EIGHT BLOCKS including the walk back to the hotel. Needless to say we both ended up with blisters, but it was amazing to see the city and start the exploring asap. Oh, and we went to go see Sex & The City that night! The cinema was gargantuan, and the movie was incredible! I've missed the show so much. Chloe and I downloaded the soundtrack and have been singing the Fergie and Jennifer Hudson songs ever since.On Tuesday we'd have a big shopping day on our no-money-budget. Bare in mind that in NYC we literally go to Starbucks about four times a day, and then eat two to three meals a day; we're so amazing at handling our finances, it's truly awe inspiring. We checked out Fifth Avenue and Madison Avenue (Gucci, Pucci, Louis Vuitton, Juicy Couture, etc) - we felt like we couldn't even go in the stores, they were so expensive looking and had doormen at the entrances. We did however go in F.A.O. Schwarz (the colossal toy store) that had huge displays everywhere, it was incredible. I'm talking about a Barbie runway (that actually moved electronically, with these 'Barbie' models gliding down the catwalk), huge dinosaur displays, massive Harry Potter monsters and creatures looming by the escalators, and a man dressed as a toy soldier on the entrance who saluted us and bowed as we walked in. NYC is so much bigger and better than anywhere I've ever been, it's such a crazy experience. Oh and we went in Tiffany's as well to look at all the jewellery, and again walked miles and miles.Wednesday was Broadway day! We headed down to Times Square to go to the TKTS booth by the Marriot Marquis Hotel to try and get half price tickets for one of the shows we wanted to see. We decided upon the 2.00pm matinee of The Country Girl starring Morgan Freeman (The Shawshank Redemption, Se7en), Peter Gallagher (Sandy from The OC) and Francis McDormand (Almost Famous, Fargo.) We managed to get tickets for $55 including the booking fee which we thought was unmissable, so we got to see our show! We didn't get our tickets until pretty late so thought we'd have to settle for seats at the back, but when we got into The Jacobs Theatre it was really small and we were SO close to the front! Literally about ten rows from the stage, it was brilliant. And the play was so, so good. I haven't been to the theatre in such a long time, and I think I'd forgotten that it's one of my favourite things to do. All three main actors were phenomenal. Being the natural born stalkers that we are, we waited by the stage door for them to come out to try and get photographs or autographs or possibly just grope someone famous. I have no idea where Francis and Peter exited because we only saw Morgan come out, but it all happened so fast! He thanked people but said he wasn't signing autographs and he had to go, and before we knew it he was across the road. We were stood right next to him though, so that was still cool. We spent the rest of Wednesday floating around Manhattan on a Million Dollar Baby high, did some gift shopping, ate pizza in a little New York pizza place in the wall, and checked out some comic book stores and other geeky things. Our exploration of the city went on late into the night, and we ended up seeing Times Square by night (which is beautiful), the Empire State building at night (from the outside, but still) which was all lit up at the top and equally beautiful, and just the general flashing lights and buzz of the city.Thursday was the day we decided to try our hand at getting the subway. It was quite fun actually; we asked a couple of people for directions along the way, and both were really friendly and told us which stop to get off at and so on. We ended up getting it at 96th Street and going down to Wall Street to see the financial district and look at the Brooklyn Bridge across the river. It's such an awesome structure. We wondered around the district for a bit and headed to the World Trade Center site, which they're actually in the process of building on at the moment. The new World Trade Center will be ready in 2012 apparently. It was all cordoned off by big building structures and barriers and things, so we went into the Port train station and looked through the blinds down below. It was surreal. All that was there were tens and tens of workers, cranes, mud, and rubble and concrete ready to start building the new tower. It all looked so wet and dirty. It's insane thinking that the center of American and world industry once stood there. I'm glad that they're building a new center though. New York definitely hasn't been beaten down by what happened, and that sums up New York really. It's so wonderful and diverse and exciting here, everyone is an individual and nobody stands out from the crowd, but everyone shares this amazing energy. As you can tell I'm still buzzing from this entire leg of the trip, so excuse me whilst I take a quiet moment to scream about finally coming to the city after wanting to ever since I was little!Today (Friday) was an awesome day. We decided on a whim that rather than go to the harbour and get a boat out to the Statue of Liberty we would spend our money on seeing another Broadway play instead. It wasn't a decision we took lightly as obviously the statue is iconic, but Chloe and I are both luvvie theatre bashers so we thought this was more apt. After much debate, and many a knocking-on-theatre-doors, we were disappointed to find out that The Little Mermaid wasn't an option (as much as I love a good old under-the-sea fantasy, Ariel isn't worth $121.50.) We were a bit upset but whatever, we ended up seeing Hairspray and it was PHENOMINAL. And I mean seriously amazing. The whole cast were superb. It's been so long since I've seen a good musical. In fact in was Billy Elliott in the West End in 2006, so this was long overdue. I pretty much had goose bumps through the whole thing. As it was the evening performance, we didn't get out until around 10.45pm as the theatre was so rammed with retards standing around blocking the exits basically staring into space. Anyways when we finally escaped the grounds we headed to the subway on 42nd to ride to our hotel and get a late dinner. As we were literally a few foot steps away from the subway (10 blocks from the theatre), a man walked past us and Chloe and I both turned to each other wide eyed. It was none other than Malcolm McDowell, aka. Alex from 'A Clockwork Orange' and Linderman from 'Heroes' (one of my favourite shows EVER.) Needless to say we both s*** a brick, grabbed the camera, turned on our heel and dashed after him! I managed to catch up and ask him for a photograph, and the guy next to him (presumably his escort/guard) agreed and took us to the side of the street. I told him I was a huge fan of him in Heroes, and thanked up for coming out to Manchester last year to the sci fi convention he attended. He thanked me, and asked if I was here for "this thing tomorrow." I was like, "What thing?" to which he replied, "That thing." I was stumped, but Clo chimed in that tomorrow was our last day, so he was like ah OK. We had our photo, but he told his guard that the flash didn't go so he took another. It turned out the first one was a video haha! The whole thing was so surreal. We thanked him again and he shook both of our hands, and off he went on his merry Heroes way! It was bizarre and so fun! I love random celebrity spotting on the streets, we're still buzzing from it now!Tomorrow (Saturday) we fly to LA at 12 mid day (5.00pm UK time) and get in 6 hours later.It should be OK as long as we have iPods charged and a book at the ready. Who knows, the pilot might be Joan Rivers.See you in Cali!