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The Color And Grit Of New York City


New York City is often described as a concrete jungle consisting of massive buildings made of concrete, steel, and glass.

Yes, parts of the city are very much like that. But not all of it.

Also, people who have never visited New York quite often imagine it as a city void of color, consisting of only black and gray, giving it a kind of Gothic appearance.

And if you're a fan of Woody Allen films, you can understand why people might imagine that because pretty much all of his films take place in Manhattan, many of which were shot in black and white, creating a wonderful vintage feel. You can't help but notice that in any Woody Allen film, New York City is not only a major backdrop, but also a lead character within the storyline.

Celebrating My Birthday In New York City: Visiting The Seaport District


Last Wednesday (October 2nd) was my birthday. So as a treat to myself, I planned a trip to New York. I mean really, as much as I love that city, where else do you think I would rather be to celebrate the day I was born? Because in all actuality, that's the city in which I truly felt I was born on my very first visit as a 14-year boy, who went on a school trip to see the Rockettes Christmas Show at Radio City Music Hall.

It was on that day I felt my soul come alive, as it never had before.

Whenever I go to New York, I never plan an exact itinerary. I give myself a basic outline of things I might want to do. However, New York City is one of those places that when you get there, the city has a way of choosing where to take you. It always feels like an adventure.

And it's funny because in the 5 years that I lived there, and in all the times I've visited over these past 18 years, every time I go, I always discover things I've never seen before.

The only thing I really wanted to do on my recent trip was to visit The Seaport District because I had heard from so many people how it's changed and how amazing it is. And they were absolutely right.

It's That Time Of Year At Trader Joe's: Pumpkin Everything! And A Peek At Halloween.


Yes folks, it's that time of year at Trader Joe's. That time of year when as you walk through the doors you see for the first time, PUMPKIN EVERYTHING!

And if you know me well, you know how much I love, adore and worship anything PUMPKIN.

About two weeks ago, I went to Trader Joe's to do my weekly shopping and just so happened to choose the day when they started to display their Autumn products, all of which were pumpkin flavored.

Well, you should have seen the way I acted when I walked in and passed the pumpkin display (pictured above).

I immediately started to say (out loud) to myself, "OH MY GOD!...OH MY GOD!...OH MY GOD!...I'm going to die of pumpkin overload!!!!!!" I began picking up the pumpkins and kissing them (I kid you not). I acted like a 6-year old. But that's exactly how Autumn and the first sight of pumpkins makes me feel. Just like a child. I get all excited and giddy and gushy.

No Matter How Many Years Pass, 9/11 Still Affects Me To My Core


Even though 18 years have passed, 9/11 still rocks me to my core.

I can't tell you how many documentaries I've watched about the events that took place that day in which I will sit there and cry from the depths of my soul for all those people who lost their lives on that day. And not only at The World Trade Center, but also the Pentagon and those onboard Flight 93 that went down in Shanksville, PA. 

However, I think because I have such a strong and loving bond with New York City, I feel the most emotional whenever I'm there at the 9/11 Memorial.

As September 11 approaches, I always feel my heart reaching out to the family members and friends of those who died that day in an effort to take away their pain. I can't even begin to imagine how they felt, and still feel 18 years later. But I'm absolutely sure that their loss and pain returns as if it were yesterday.

I also believe that even for those of us who were not directed affected by 9/11, we were, because we're all interconnected. We share the loss. And we share the pain.    

Today, I would like to share a post that I published on this blog almost 10 years ago. Some of my longtime readers may have already read it. But this is the post I always go back and read each year at this time because it was the one and only time I had been to the top of The World Trade Center.

And sadly, my last.