Christmas in New York! It’s been on my bucket list since…well since I started a bucket list. It’s iconic. It’s the picturesque American Christmas – from Macy’s flagship store to the Radio City Rockettes. Everything about New York at Christmas is magical.
To be completely honest, I was a bit of a Scrooge this season. I decorated my Christmas tree in my apartment, I put up lights around my balcony, I hosted my company’s Christmas luncheon, but something just felt off. I wasn’t feeling the magic. I wasn’t counting down the days or humming Christmas carols non-stop. But New York swooped down and saved my Christmas cheer at the last second. From the moment we came out of the train station, I knew a blast of cold air and larger than life Christmas decor was exactly what I needed. My best friend from high school and I had been planning this trip to New York since the summer. We took the train up from Charlottesville and arrived in New York City around 3:30 on Wednesday afternoon the week before Christmas. Within an hour and a half, we were situated in our cozy little hotel room listening to Christmas music and planning our first night out. First things first, we had to the see the Tree! Keeping within five blocks of our hotel, we saw some of the most incredible and fun decorations that had me asking, “Where do they store all this stuff after Christmas?!” There were giant red ornaments hanging out in a fountain on one block and a giant string of colored lights laying out on the next one. Giant nutcrackers were just waiting to have their picture taken and thousands of lights were twinkling at you from every tree. While making our way to Rockefeller Center, I experienced the closest thing to the Grinch’s heart growing at the end of Dr. Seuss’s awesome little tale.
After making it to the Rock, we witnessed a proposal on the ice and shuffled our way to the end of the plaza to grab the elusive picture of the angels and Christmas tree. At this point, I said “y’all” to a nice couple who took our picture. I am from the South and not ashamed! We then decided that we would rather visit the Top of the Rock instead of the Empire State Building. I’ve done this once before, and I’m so glad we went through it again. It was so full of history and all I could do was marvel at the pictures of the building being built. It blew me away that they could build something that amazing without the technology we have today.
After scoping out the city from a bird’s eye view, we decided to eat as locally as possible. We found this little restaurant/bar and ordered typical American bar food and it was delicious. Warm, soft pretzel bites and cheeseburgers speak to my soul and my soul was singing happily that night.
That’s all for now. I’ll write more about day 2 and 3 soon!