Tech Corner


Journal Pictures

New York

So NYC was a lot of fun. Next to Vegas it's my favourite city in the States. I was surprised to find that Manhattan island isn't very wide. It's only twelve blocks! It takes no time at all to cross it. But length wise it's a different story at over 200 blocks. I found it very disorienting at first. With all the skyscrapers towering above you you don't have any point of reference. You'd think you'd be able to locate a tower and use it to get your bearings, but with so many towers unless you're far away from it or right beneath it, you can't see it.

The first night we just got settled in. When we got to our hotel it was pouring rain, but Chris, Hailey and I (Kim stayed in her room) wandered around Times Square with some umbrellas we bought from a souvenir shop. Nothing screams 'tourist' like a 'I Love NY' umbrella....Times Square is a lot of fun. It reminds me a lot of the Vegas strip. But with way more people. It was neat seeing the New Years ball and all the jumbo advertising screens. Oh! And sirens! Constantly and everywhere. I've never heard so many Sirens in my life.

Yesterday I got dragged around by our little shopping diva miss Hailey in the fashion district. She was the picture of consumerism walking around with shopping bags from all the elite stores. All that was missing was her holding a little dog. I felt completely out of place there. I'm surprised they even let me in the stores.

We also made use of some passes we bought to go on the HoHo bus. For half of it I was enjoying it, seeing all the sites and getting a feel for where all the different neighborhoods were. But then we ran into the infamous NY traffic and it took forever to finish the tour. I've never had a good experience on a bus tour. I hate them! But as I said, it was at least ok.

For dinner we tied one on at the Hard Rock Cafe. We had a blast. It was an hour wait for a table, but somehow one of the bar guys set us up with one right away. We felt all special. After we hung out in the square, sat on the steps and people watched until we finally stumbled back to our rooms. Times Square is so much better at night.

Today I literally walked about a hundred blocks. My legs are killing me. The girls wanted to do yet more shopping so I spent most of the day wandering around the city. First I went and saw the USS Intrepid. I can now say I've been on an aircraft carrier. Unfortunately the Space Shuttle pavilion was closed until July. I was hoping to get my picture taken with it. But I got to wonder throughout the ship. On the flight deck they had a bunch of jets and helicopters parked including the SR-71 spy plane. You also got to see the bridge and the various guns they used for defense. In the flight hangar it was a massive museum with displays of everything from WWII to the space era. They also had a submarine and the Concorde there as well. Military geek that I am, I'm sure I had a huge grin on my face as I wandered around.

From there I walked most of the way to ground zero. I didn't go in to the actual memorial site as by that time I needed to head back to the girls, but at least I was there. I saw the newly built freedom tower. And it was obvious where the second tower stood as it was just a massive empty space there. My understanding is they'll be building new buildings there eventually.

From there I went and found where New York Ink was, but sadly my girl wasn't there. It was a bizarre out of the way location and inside wasn't as interesting as LA Ink was. Still there was a couple people from the show that I recognized. My feet were killing me from all the walking so I braved the subway to get back to the hotel. It actually wasn't a big deal. It was a bit confusing at first but didn't take long to figure out - nothing like London was.

Hailey stood in line forever to get us discounted tickets to go see Chicago tonight. Our first Broadway show! I'm looking forward to it as I loved the movie.

The people here are great. I felt totally safe wandering around on my own. I'm sure it's different in the areas outside Manhattan, but on the island itself its fine. I felt much safer here than when we were in LA. I definitely want to come back here. There's so much to see and do you could easily spend several weeks here and not see all of it.


Day 2 at sea. The weather is finally perfect with the first two being overcast with occasional showers. I'm sitting in our cabana looking out at the picturesque sea. We're really in the middle of nowhere. This is the farthest out to sea we've been and in the deepest waters. Our cabana is essentially a private pod with shade and loungers. There's only five on the ship, so as soon as we got on board (which was before everyone else as we had priority boarding) we bee lined it to reserve one.

The ship is nice. It's also massive and is the biggest one we've been on so far. The Breakaway is also brand new, and this is its fifth sailing I believe. That said the layout is pretty much the same as other NCL ships we've been on. One nice feature is what they call the waterfront. All the bars have areas inside and out. So when it's nice you can hang out outside and enjoy the view. Our suite is typical. Sadly nothing will ever compare to the owners suite we had during our last Europe cruise though. But the decor is nice and the extra space appreciated. The tub is useless though, I don't know why these ships bother with them. It would make more sense to just build a bigger shower.

Last night we went and saw a dance show called Burn the Floor. It was a bunch of hotties doing ballroom dances like the Waltz, Tango, Quickstep etc. As both Chris and I watch shows such as Dancing With the Stars we really enjoyed it. It was a top notch production. We also went to the Ice Bar. It was pretty fun, not as great ad the one in Copenhagen, but considering we were on a cruise ship, it was cool (hah!).

Oh! And Chris won at Bingo! She won just over $600 (that we split with Kim & Hailey). I'll never complain that we never win again. The food has been good. No complaints so far. However both Chris & I noticed the food portions have gotten smaller. Considering how much food we see wasted all the time and the fact we're trying to be healthy that's probably a good thing. Speaking of which, I've been good this cruise. No wild partying for me. It's actually pretty sad, with my issues and Kim's issues and the fact Hailey is basically allergic to booze, Chris has been left to pick up the slack. Shooters!

Ug. I spoke to soon. I got obliterated the next day. I think a combination of too much sun and really stiff drinks put me over. I got violently ill. So I was pissed off at my own stupidity and it had ruined what had been a fun day up to that point. Worse, I ended up missing the Cirque show.

It's been a few days since my last update and I'm trying to remember what we did when. The days have kinda blurred together. I don't even know what day it is. I guess that's the sign of a good vacation. Yesterday we spent the day at the beach. We were going to go to Elbow beach as its not as crowded as Horseshoe Bay which is where all the tourists go. But when we drove by it in our taxi it looked so beautiful we went there instead. It was a lot of fun, and not as crowded as we feared. The day before that went on a catamaran snorkel cruise. The crew was really good and we enjoyed drinking rum swizzle while listening to tales of the Bermuda Triangle. The swimming was fun and I saw a number of cool looking fish.

Last night we went and saw the show Rock of Ages. Chris really liked it but I thought it was just ok. There was lots of swearing and sexual innuendo. And the woman were dressed like slutty 80's rocker chicks with garters and skimpy underwear. Of course I liked that part a lot, but I couldn't believe parents had taken their kids to it.

This morning we got up early to go parasailing which was a first for all of us. Kim however chickened out and just watched. I'm glad I did it as its one of those things you need to try once. Yesterday I started feeling sick as I finally came down with someone's (Hailey) cold. So I wasn't sure I was going to partake. But I'm glad I did as it was pretty fun. From there the girls booked a taxi tour of the island while I came back to the ship to rest. Right now it's pissing rain, but that's good as it's been so stinking hot here. Despite our best precautions, we're all sunburnt in places.

Last day at sea. Chris and I had cappuccino's on our balcony and watched the flying fish taking off below. At one point we saw an entire school. She's gone off to play Bingo again and I'm just going to relax in our private club area. It's been a good trip. It's had some ups and downs but overall it was a nice getaway.

In hindsight I think the cabana was a waste of money. The enclosures block most of any breeze, and unless the sun is behind them they're simply too hot to hang in. They were all booked, but almost always empty. On a different itinerary it might have been different. But I did like having access to the private club. Nice and relaxing and not crowded like the rest of the ship. We didn't really take advantage of The Haven other than to have breakfast there. The pool and hot tub area were always full of kids so we didn't spend any time there. The food has been good. Last night we ate at a specialty restaurant where they'd come around serving different cuts of meat off a skewer. It was awesome although I was in a meat induced coma afterwards. Tonight we are going to the restaurant run by Iron Chef Zakarrian.

Bermuda is a neat place. It's in such a unique spot of the world. Had I known it'd be so hot we would have come a few weeks earlier. But both Kim and I said we wouldn't mind coming back as there's lots to see and do. Years ago, just out of college I almost got a tech job working in Bermuda. It was one of those 'what if' moments in life, and the main reason I wanted to travel here. So I'm glad I got to visit it.


Pictures can be found here.