New York City: Our BabyMoon to the USA

After discovering we are expecting our first baby together we decided we needed a last holiday before the new arrival. We also hadn’t been on a holiday for quite some time and figured this is our last chance for a couples holiday! I had been to New York on two occasions before and quite agreed this city to be one of the greatest in the world and since Jon hadn’t been before I wanted to show him what he had been missing out on.

Our flight to Amsterdam was at 9:35 am on Tuesday, September 11. We left in plenty of time, so we didnt risk missing our flight due to traffic or some other problems – we have missed our flight to Vienna on several occasions due to traffic jams and bad weather! We parked up at T2 at Manchester Airport, which we had pre-booked a week ahead for £35. We got our bits together and headed for the bus stop, where the bus was waiting but just about to depart. At the terminal we checked in our luggage and asked to be checked in for the second leg of our journey – AMS to EWR – which I had been unable to check in for online. This resulted in me not being able to select our seats, usually window seats. We finally got a allocated seats in the middle section of the aircraft and as the flight was fully booked, we didn’t have any other options.

The Delta Airlines flight to Amsterdam was on time and went by in a flash, as both Jon and I slept for the duration of the flight. At Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam we didn’t have enough time to sit down for a drink and had to rush to the next Gate. Jon, as per usual, needed to use the wash room several times – I call it the “nervous pee” – and kept me waiting at the Gate. It seemed everyone had already boarded the plane and I started getting a bit impatient as Jon was still in the bathroom.

After the customary security checks and scans, we boarded the plane, thinking we were one of the last ones. But to our relief, there were few more passengers arriving late. The total flight time to Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) was 8hrs 25min.

Immediately, a russian (?) flight attendant caught my eye. Asking her if we could change seats to a free one if no one claimed it, she was rude to me and said I’d have to wait till the plane has shut the doors. I knew this, but the fact she was so rude and seemed irritated bothered me. This was her job. If you don’t like it, find something else. The aircraft itself seemed old, dated and very cramped. I had flown with Delta Airlines before and had an amazing experience. This flight, however, was nothing like I remember and I couldn’t wait to get off the plane. Considering Jon wasn’t the best of travellers he felt the same, maybe a tad worse!!!

Chrysler Building

Chrysler Building @ 42nd and Park Avenue

After 8 very, very long hours, we finally landed in Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR). After disembarking the plane we had to go through immigration – and what a pain in the a** this was. We must have been in the queue a good hour or so before we finally made it to the desk. I complained incessantly, that US immigration need to open more desks with this amount of travellers waiting to be let into the country. To our delight, our officer was very charming and friendly and we chatted with him for a bit longer about where we are from and what we do for a living and of course where we will be staying in NYC.

At the baggage claim, we got our suitcases and headed for the exit. Just before the exit, there was an officer waiting to collect the immigration cards and I really could not make out what he said, so I just followed the man in front of me. Immediately I heard a “ma’am, did I say to go left?” in a very southern accent, ehm “no”, “I actually didn’t understand what the f**k you are saying” is what I actually thought and wished I could say out loud. He then proceeded to recheck my passport and said “this is nothing personal, I’ve just got to check something”, “whatever a**face”, is what I thought to myself. So, eventually we made it out of the airport.

We stepped outside and embraced the heat, it must have been around 28 degrees or more, while I was trying to figure out where to go and how to get into the city. We followed the signs to “AirTrain” and bought tickets to “PennStation NYC” from the ticket machine, which cost $12,50 for a single adult ticket. If I remember correctly it took about 1 hour to get from the Airport to Penn Station.

As soon as we stepped outside the Station, both of us were in awe and it was still hard to grasp we were actually in New York City. From what I remember from my past trips, I tried to guide our way to the hotel, only knowing approximately where to find it. I knew it was close to 3rd avenue, and we were on 8th avenue … so there we went, walking the mean streets of New York City with our suitcase in tow, looking for our hotel – the Pod 39!

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