Every year before Memorial Day and through the Memorial Day weekend – actually, for one week — sailors from around the world are invited to New York City for a little pomp, a little circumstance and a little fun in the “City That Never Sleeps”. This is, after all, a great metropolis to explore, and of course, be treated well (yes, we do give love to the members of our Armed Forces!).
I decided to take advantage of the Saturday afternoon sunshine to visit the ships docked along the Hudson River near the West Side Highway. (Word to the Wise: Get up and get going EARLY because the throngs of crowds — natives and visitors — will be ridiculously overwhelming if you’re interested in visiting the ships and all the go-to places our ship-weary men and women frequent…e.g. Times Square, Rockefeller Center, Grand Central Terminal, Central Park — and most of all, Ground Zero.)
I also decided to wear my rockin’ platform heels (Yaaaaaas!!!) and skinny jeans (Remember them? No? Well, let me remind you.).
What I didn’t decide: To experience the intense burning that one can only get after wearing bitchin’ly hot heels for 8 1/2 hours. Oh, I got a blister on the sole of each foot. Ouch.
P.S. I didn’t even get to explore the ships. Oh no. When I finally got to the West 54th entrance after 3 o’clock, I, and 1,000 other people, were turned away. (I don’t know if it was 1,000 people, but it was a-lot-of-people — and we were all unhappy. But frankly, after looking in through the chainlink fence at the line, it had to be at least 6 city blocks long and about 6 feet deep. No thanks.)
Soooooo…I ended up in Times Square…snapped a few photos (they’re not my best work…but I didn’t want anything pose-y…just casual), and got the heck out of there in about 30 minutes. It was uncomfortably crowded, and it didn’t help that it was overcast, storm clouds rolled in and then it rained lightly for a while making it a wet, sticky mess.
But….on the flip side: What a way to enjoy a Saturday afternoon! In addition to U.S. Armed Forces, I saw sailors from the Far East and Canada (Hello, eh?)…The men (and women) looked so sharp in their dress uniforms. *big smile*
If you’re in or near New York City, take advantage of this annual event. It’s wonderful — Great for singles and families!