An American Tail (LWILT #38)

For most of last week I was in New York and this is being sent from there so here is a transatlantic LWILT

  • To keep safe crossing the road in the big Apple, your mantra should be ‘White man, white man’. This has nothing to do with the varied ethnic minorities in New York but refers to the figure of a white man at crossings. When it is not safe to cross there is a red hand. When it is safe …you get the picture.
  • Butterflies have not deserted us. They all seem to be in New York! There were so many and they were just like the Americans, right up close and personal, landing on your clothes to get a closer look.
  • New Yorkers certainly celebrate Mother’s Day in style. There were lots of family parties going on in Central Park. Now in the UK we are likely to go for a picnic but in NYC, there were tables all set out with vases of flowers and so much food that they could feed many of the passers-by!
  • When they say everything is BIG in New York City, they mean it! For bacon and eggs – see 6/7 rashers, enough scrambled eggs to feed 3, potatoes and salad. Of course it comes with toast in case you are hungry.
  • There are some cultures that love taking photographs of themselves rather than the sights. They usually manage to get a sight in there somewhere but it certainly plays second fiddle to the face!
  • Contrary to the rumours, Americans are pleasant, friendly folk.
  • Skyscrapers are aptly named. Before our trip, the term ‘skyscraper’ referred to tall buildings but the New York skyline, whichever direction you look in, has buildings that truly scrape the sky.
  • A good sense of geometry can help you find you way around Manhattan.  The road system is based on a grid with streets going one way and avenues going the other. Walking around can feel quite claustrophobic though partly because of the density of the tall buildings either side of every road. I was reminded of the scene from Star Wars when the fighters fly down the narrow ‘corridor’ to drop their bombs.
  •  Subways are different from the Metro and the Underground. Although all three provide transport underground, there are some striking differences which can present problems when you assume they are all the same!
  • There are lots of ‘bag’ folk in New York. Many of them have trolleys so maybe that is why I noticed them. Or maybe it is because we don’t notice our own homeless people but become very aware of the rest of the worlds. This is in stark contrast to the role that the Statue of Liberty played to the many millions immigrating to America.  Whatever it is there are still too many for the twenty first century.

When I was being courted by my wonderful husband we lived some distance from each other. This song was ‘our song’ for those times when we were apart. It is from the film ‘An American Tail’ and given  its title, I think it very apt for this post. Enjoy!


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  • Wow I bet you had an amazing time, will you be posting some more photos?

  • I will be traveling to New York with my daughter ( who has never been there ) next month. Thank you for reminding me about life in this city. It has been over 30 years since my last visit. This was a great and informative post. Love the video as well.


  • I like how you say that the buildings are so tall they look like they actually scrape the sky. I’ve only been there once when I was a late teen but this post brought back memories. Hope you had as nice a time as this sounds.

  • Seeing the odd sky-scraper is one thing, being surrounded by them is absolutely breathtaking, if a tad claustrophobic.
    What I find amazing about the grid street plan, is that you are aware of your bearings even inside buildings.
    But what most reminds me of the USA is actually the smell of the (tap) water – was back there lately on a flying visit: one whiff and it all came back.
    P.S. I didn’t need to untick the comment box now – has that been sorted?

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