Wednesday, December 25, 2013

First Trip to New York City, 1953 - Marlene, 72

Having grown up on a farm, the trip to New York was quite an adventure for my brother and me.  I was thirteen years old, and my brother was fifteen. We were accompanied by my aunt Bea, and stayed with my uncle Andy (my mother's brother) and his wife aunt Josie.

Aunt Josie owned a large, impressive 3 story brownstone in Brooklyn. The building consisted of their beautiful apartment on the main level, another apartment on the second level, and rented rooms on the third level. Aunt Josie worked for the telephone company and we marveled at the beautiful working crystal telephone that was awarded to her for her many years with the company.

Uncle Andy was determined to show us the sights of the big apple for the week we were there. We started out with a ferry ride to Staten Island, and a tour of the statue of liberty. We were so impressed with the size and beauty of lady liberty. Aunt Bea was very nervous, as my brother and I excitedly climbed up the winding stairs for a fantastic view from the crown of the statue.

Our next trip was to the empire state building with another great view from the top of the building. We were so high up that we could actually feel the building sway in the wind. Uncle Andy knew someone who worked at the Waldorf-Astoria hotel, and he gave us a tour of the most elegant hotel I have ever seen. We were in awe of the red velvet draperies, the beautiful crystal chandeliers, and the magnificent oriental rugs.

The best part of our tour was Rockefeller Center. What a fantastic place! We saw the Rockettes perform with their rhythmic high kicks, followed by the ballet Swan Lake. It was magical! This was when I became a lifelong patron of the ballet.

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