It's 5 o'clock here in Dublin and I just woke up from an hour nap. My sleeping patterns are so far off right now, especially since I only got about 4 hours of quality sleep the last two nights in the plane rides over. But I'm finally here!!! After months of waiting and a little bit of planning, I am finally in Europe. I'm already finding one thing out for sure pretty early on...this is going to be a more expensive trip than I had anticipated. I'll most likely be living off of bagettes for most of my meals, getting more than my daily needs of carbohydrates.I've also realized that there is a whole industry banking on ripping off stupid tourists. A guy in Times Square tried to sell me a camera charger for $79 bucks. He said it was a deal, as it was marked at $129. I just laughed and left. I found that same exact charger in another more legit store for $20.
The last couple of days have been great though. On Tuesday, I spent the day exploring New York City, hitting all the key tourists spots in less than 5 hours. I am simply amazed at not only how large the skyscrapers are there, but also how many there are. Unlike other large cities like San Francisco that has all of its skyscrapers in a 5 block radius of downtown, the majority of New York City was filled with at least 25+ story buildings. ANd not only that, the city is a mix of the old and the new. It was not uncommon to see a decripid century old building, especially a church, wedged between mammoth new glass skyscrapers.
Another rather odd thing about NYC is the amount of police officers they have there. Every other car was some sort of police vehicle. It was ridiculous.I don't know if that made me feel safer or not.
In my 5-hour excursion, I ended up walking half of the super old Brooklyn Bridge. I really do not know how that thing is still standing. I don't know if NYC is in a seismicly active zone, but if that bridge ever experiences an earthquake, I suspect it would not fair very well. I think it was built in 1875 and by the looks of it, there have not been very many improvements. There is still a wood foot/bike path and all the steel on the bridge is rusted. I guess it gives it character.
I also had a chance to visit the World Trade Center site. It was quite a different sight from when I able to go to the top of one of the towers in 2000. Although most of the ground construction was blocked from sight, the steel skeleton of the first couple floors of One World Trade (formaly called Freedom Tower until about a week ago) was visible. It was a pretty cool thing to see. I could not imagine what it would have been like to be there on 9-11 to experience the buildings fall. They were so big and such a huge part of the city when they were there.
Now I am in Dublin. It is such a beautiful city. After flying in, I took a bus to the middle of the city. After wondering around for a little while trying to find out where my hostel was, I realized that I was completely lost. I had a map. but there were no street signs. Well, there were signs, I just did not see them because they were posted on the side of the buildings instead of on poles. I was golden after I found that out. I went to Trinity College, Temple Bar District, and then wondered aimlessly through parks, residential areas, and the finacial district. The amount of bars that Dublin has lining every street is simple amazing. I can see how the Irish got the reputation of being drunks.
Anyways, I should be going...Oh yeah, this website does not have spell check so don't make fun of me for my speling and grammer. I am already aware that I suck at spelling and English in general. That's why I'm an engineer.
Until next time...