I Left My Heart in New York City

It has been a little over two years now since I went to New York City for my first (and only) time. It seems like it was only yesterday I was there though. I have been longing to go back ever since I left. And now, since I am thinking about that glorious city, I have decided to dedicate a post to it.

Here are a few of my favorite pictures I captured while I was in New York City and some feelings I happened to scribble down two years ago:

Lights, lights every where you look. Some of them flashing, some as still as the night itself. People always surround me here, never seeing the same face twice. People from every race and every nation. Faces of sorrow and hate, of experience and inexperience. Some of these faces look lost; they may know where they are at in the vicinity but they know neither where they are at in life or where they are going. People dressed in all different types of clothes; some in suits, some in heels, others in rags crumpled up on the ground. It amazes me that these people let nothing get in their way. They keep moving in rain or shine because they have to make a living.

The people of the city are so beautiful to me, in their many colored clothes and fancy accessories. Some of them kind, others that act like you’re not there. Old men in the park reading the morning paper, colored men on the side lines filling the air with sweet notes of Jazz. They smile at the people that pass by them and hope that somebody will throw some change into their box.

As funny as it may sound, I think I liked the city best in the mist and rain. The city had an air of mystery and wonder that hung about it in this weather, wonder that made me feel that if I had conquered this city, I could conquer the world. But conquer the world as I might, I did not want to be anywhere but there, in the city that never sleeps. Any store and any kind of food can be found in this glorious city. In this magical city one can travel forwards or backwards in time. It is the one place I have felt nearest to the big Hollywood stars. Standing where Miss Audrey Hepburn stood, walking where Amanda Seyfried walked. Many before them and many more to come after them.

Written: June 2012

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Pittsburgh Photos

Brendan and I made a second trip to the Golden Triangle, only this time we did not go downtown to take pictures. We decided that we would wander around the area of the University of Pittsburgh instead. I like this area of Pittsburgh; while it still has that wonderful atmosphere of the city, it is a bit more calm than the hustle and bustle of downtown.

Pittsburgh – A Different Side of the Golden Triangle

Ah Pittsburgh. It was so good to drive back into this beloved city once again. After leaving Ocean City, New Jersey, I came to spend a week in Pennsylvania with Brendan and his family at their house. I had no idea that I would have the opportunity to visit Pittsburgh as much as I have in the past year. This was my fourth time traveling to the Golden Triangle and I could not have been more pleased.

Since I have photographed the city of Pittsburgh several times before, I wanted to try to capture a different side of it. I particularly wanted to focus on the street life and details of the city. So here is what I ended up with.

Also, I’d like to point out one of the highlights from my day. Brendan and I wandered over to the fountain near PPG Plaza to sit down for a moment and do some people watching. People watching is one of my favorite pass times simply because human beings are so fascinating. As we stood taking in our surroundings, we saw a little girl approaching the fountain. This little girl was the most adorable girl with blonde bouncy curls and bright eyes. And I couldn’t help but smile as I watched the little girl run, jump, dance and flit about through the fountain as her mother stood by keeping a watchful eye on her. This little girl, so care free and happy, shared some of her joy with the people around her as they looked on with smiles on their faces. If only I could be more like this little girl and learn to dance and be joyful about the simple things in life. I also admired the mom’s patience as she watched her daughter playing in the water. She never yelled or fussed at the little girl, she simply watched her play and enjoy herself until it was time for them to leave. I want to be a fun and patient mom like that when I have my own children in the future.

Exploring the Streets of Philadelphia

During my stay in Ocean City, New Jersey with Brendan and his family, we decided to make a trip to Philadelphia since it was only a little over an hour away. I had been to Philadelphia once before during the summer last year with Brendan and his family, but we were only there for a couple hours and I did not have time to leisurely wander the streets and explore the city. But during this trip I had the opportunity to wander the streets with Brendan and take some photos of this delightful city.

There was an event taking place in Philly that evening called Night Market Philadelphia. Here is a brief description of what the night market is according to visitphilly.com:

A popular series of outdoor street festivals, Night Market Philadelphia is a seasonal celebration of food, music and community held in the city’s vibrant neighborhoods.

Attracting thousands of visitors from around the region, the preeminent celebration of street food features dozens of the city’s best food trucks and restaurants along with live entertainment from local musicians, artists and more.

In 2013, Night Market hosted four wildly successful outings in Fairmount, West Oak Lane, South Street and Chinatown. This year will be just as phenomenal with Night Markets planned for Old City, West Oak Lane, Lancaster Avenue and Chinatown.

The Night Market was a beautiful array of local tastes and talents. I was feeling a bit picky with my food choices that night so I did not get much more than a taste of food from the market, but I was more than delighted to wander the streets with a cup of coffee in my hand and soak in the atmosphere. I love being an obscure observer in the crowded city streets. The streets were teeming with life; people of all different kinds strolled through the inner corners of the city while Amy Winehouse music swirled through the air and the aroma of freshly cooked local foods tickled my nose. To me, being surrounded by tall buildings was a refreshing change after living seaside for a few days. That may sound strange because I am sure most people find the sea more refreshing than the congested streets of the city, but being in the city makes me feel so alive. I do not know why, but it excites me to be surrounded by strangers in the city.

After leaving the Night Market, me Brendan and his family decided to drive over to the Philadelphia Art Museum. Brendan and I had never been to the museum before, so we ran up all of the stairs to the Art Museum like I am sure many first time visitors do. I grew up watching the ‘Rocky’ movies, so that was an exciting moment for me and it also gave me one more thing to scratch off my bucket list. Iconic stairs and Rocky statue aside, the parts of the Art Museum that I had never seen before were much more beautiful and impressive. I enjoyed walking around to the back side of the museum and seeing the scenery there. I would say that it was a very lovely evening spent in Philadelphia. I look forward to going back again someday.

Spring Break 2014 (Part 2) – Downtown Excursions

On to the next part of my adventures over Spring Break!

On Tuesday March 11th, I spent the day exploring and taking pictures in downtown Pittsburgh with Brendan and his family. We got to the city around 10 a.m. and spent a couple of hours walking downtown taking pictures.

Brendan and I both love to walk around without really having a plan, just exploring until we come across something or somewhere that catches our attention. So that’s what we did. I think we got some really good pictures. A little later in the afternoon, we went to lunch at Jerome Bettis’ Grille 36. Since it was such a nice sunny day, we ate outside on the patio. There was a nice view of the city and the river from the restaurant. I was a little hesitant about the the food at the restaurant at first because the menu didn’t exactly seem like it had a lot of vegetarian friendly options. But I ended up ordering the veggie burger and it was so delicious! Definitely the best veggie burger I have had to date.

After lunch, we walked along the river walk and then headed over to the Monongahela Incline. This was my first time going up this incline. The view was stunning, just like the view from the Duquesne Incline, and it was nice to see the city from a different perspective.

To end our day of exploring, we all went to see Son of God at the movie theater and then headed back home to get some much needed sleep.