Our primary target for the next day was the 9/11 memorial, for which we were able to get free tickets from the Tourist Information office. This meant we could use the Explorer Pass for the hop on, hop off City Sights bus tour, which had a stop near the memorial. The site was still under development – the museum is not yet open - and affected by the building work going on around it for the new World Trade Centre buildings, but it was still an amazing and thought provoking experience.
We had lunch in a nearby cafe and then walked through the financial district and down Wall Street, hoping to spit on some bankers but couldn’t spot any! We were able to hop back on our bus near the Southern Seaport and were transported through Chinatown and the East village before hopping back off at the UN building, where we signed up for a guided tour. Our extremely informative, Brazilian guide showed us the (temporary) Security Council chamber – the proper one is being refurbished; she didn’t say who was paying! – and the General Assembly chamber, while explaining how proceedings are conducted, as well as a quick canter through the development work the UN undertakes.
After that we were back on the bus and off to 42nd Street and a visit to Ripley’s museum of oddities. I was attracted by the name but if truth be told it was a bit of a disappointment as it was really rather a freak show with quite a large number of African and Eastern masks thrown in. Then we flagged down one of the free ferry buses and staggered back to the boat for a rest.
These tiles were first put up to find people displaced in the 9/11 tragedy and many have remained as a memorial to those lost.
The Flatiron building One of the new World Trade Center buildings still under construction
The South pool – one of the 2 commemorative features created on the footprint of the destroyed towers The new towers have mirrored surfaces
The North pool NY Stock Exchange – we couldn’t hear any cries of “sell, sell”!
And no sign of any bankers outside the National Bank building with George Washington Southern seaport
The flags of the united nations We weren’t sure how they were calculating this figure but it kept going up
Security Council chamber General Assembly chamber – the art is supposed to represent whatever you want and be non nationally specific
This truck misjudged the turn and impaled himself on the food vending vehicle This Buddha at Ripley’s is made of shredded bank notes