Saturday, September 22

A perfect day for flying

Our second (and final) day in New York dawned with brilliant blue skies and sunshine. A perfect day to go flying; which is exactly what we did. At 9:45am our helicopter tour of New York departed from the Downtown heliport at the southern tip of Manhattan. For the next 20 minutes we flew past almost every conceivable New York landmark including the Statue of Liberty, the World Trade Centre construction site, Central Park, Yankee Stadium, the George Washinton Bridge and even the Queen Mary which had docked overnight in Brooklyn.

We then took a quick taxi tour of Wall Street and the NYSE before making our way through another of the city's ubiquitous security mazes into the 9/11 memorial. The memorial opened on the tenth anniversary of the infamous terrorist attack last year and so it's a new and rather unique landmark in the Big Apple. It was also my first visit. The memorial is superbly done. I was moved by its simplicity and the wonderful calm oasis it creates in a city that never sleeps.

Our final tour stop for the day was a ferry ride out to Liberty Island to stand in the shadow of the mighty lady herself. The island is also the perfect place to look back across the Hudson River for a classic view of the Manhattan skyline. While waiting to board the boat we also stopped for while in Battery Park to enjoy another New York classic;. A hot dog from a umbrella shaded street vendor.

All in all we've enjoyed an absolutely magnificant day in New York. Dad came off the ferry with a smile from ear to ear. We're now safely tucked up in our lavish hotel in Montreal after a short, uneventful flight. Sadly the weather in Montreal is forecast to be rather damp for the next few days, clearing later in the week as we slowly make our way back toward Toronto via Ottawa and the scenic Thousand Islands district.

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