Walking Around The Financial District: The Oculus, The 9/11 Survivor Tree, And Getting A Specific Photograph Of One World Trade Center


After I left Union Square Park, I walked down to SoHo and met my friend Ellie. As I mentioned in my previous post, she and I share the same passion for New York, so we acted like two silly kids in a massive playground all day. In fact, when we met up on a designated street corner that morning we starting screaming; jumping up and down; and hugging, because not only were we that happy to see one another, but also that happy to be in New York City. Together.

Ellie had never been to the Financial District in Lower Manhattan, so that's where we decided to spend the first part of our day. I've been there several times over the years. In fact, when I first moved to New York I lived in the dormitories at Pace University, but was anxious to visit again because that area of Manhattan is constantly changing. Back when I lived in New York, the Financial District was a busy 9 to 5 - Monday thru Friday area. Yet on the weekends, it resembled a ghost town. Now however, it has morphed into a combination of business and residential living. It is an area that is booming. Personally, I love that part of the city because of its eclectic architecture and vibe. I know this sounds strange, but I actually find the Financial District, very sexy!

Inside the Oculus...


Here is a picture of Ellie and I. 
Don't you LOVE her sunglasses? It was Valentine's Day so she cleverly wore frames that were heart-shaped...


Ellie has a tattoo of a space ship on her left arm. At one point, she noticed a mural on a wall with a space ship. So, I snapped a picture of her standing underneath because I thought it was hysterical how the two space ships looked almost identical...


Here she is standing in front of a wall consisting of small glass prisms that reflected the sunlight from behind. I did not edit this picture other than cropping it. The colorful effects you see were caused by the sunlight and various angles I moved the camera. Isn't it so cool?

Two crazy Libras...


Me, standing in front of Pace University...


The remarkable Survivor Tree at the 9/11 Memorial...


It's a miracle that this precious pear tree survived 9/11, yet it did...


If you look real close, you can see tiny pre-Spring buds on its branches. 
That's One World Trade Center behind it...


This final photograph is of a location that I desperately wanted to find for the longest time. I had seen this view of One World Trade Center posted on many photography Instagram feeds and thought it was exquisite. Ellie and I walked through the many streets surrounding this landmark in the hopes of discovering that specific viewpoint. After some time of searching, I told Ellie that if I couldn't find it, I'd come back another time. And no sooner did I say that did we turn down a street and the two of us exclaimed (in complete unison) WOW! And I yelled, "THAT'S IT...THAT'S IT!!!!"

So I ran into the street and quickly snapped my camera five times.

Yup, I got it!

In the middle of these two gorgeous vintage buildings, you can see the tower in all it's modern and magnificent glory. Looking surreal.

One World Trade Center...


Have a grrrreat rest of your week, y'all!
X

26 comments

  1. Valerie DaggattFebruary 21, 2019

    Yes, I'm glad you found the tree. As I've said many times before I love the New York architecture, especially in that final picture. Looks like you picked a good day for your excursion to the big city, especially as you had a good friend to share it with. It really is a pity you couldn't move there.

    Enjoy the rest of the week, what remains of it.

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  2. What a fun friend to walk around the city with you! And I love that you found the vantage point you wanted for that final picture. Very cool shot! The oculus is such an amazing structure. I hope I get to go back and see it some day. And I had not heard of the survivor tree, so thanks for the info. Glad you had a good day with your friend. XO

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  3. Ron, looks and sounds like you had such a great day with your friend, Ellie. Your photographs of the Oculus are incredible. I love the first one at the head of your post because you can see the One World Trade Center through the roof. And that last shot is amazing! Wow!

    Don't you just love New York?

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  4. Me too, Valerie! Every time I've gone down to the 9/11 Memorial, I always forgot about the tree. I was my friend, Ellie, who reminded me the last time I was there. And I'm so glad she did because it was so moving to actually see it. And AMAZING.

    OMG..the day was perfect! We couldn't have asked for a more beautiful day, weather-wise. And yes, especially spending it with a good friend.

    I haven't given up on moving to NY, no way. In fact, now that Ellie is there, she will be looking out for me for a possible apartment roommate situation so that I can split the rent. She moved there with her two roommates she had here in Philly, so they moved together.

    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Have an awesome rest of your week! Can't you believe the weekend is almost here? This week flew by!

    X

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  5. Yes, Ellie and I worked together for two years here in Philly. We hit is off instantly and became close friends. She's a great gal!

    "I love that you found the vantage point you wanted for that final picture. "

    OMG, me too! When I finally found the spot, I was soooooooooooooo HAPPY! I ran into the street and took five quick pics and was so grateful that most of them came out well because I had no time to focus the camera.

    The Oculus is am amazing structure. And no matter how many times I go back, I am continually impressed by the architecture. Also, each time I go back I notice that more and more stores and eateries have opened.

    "And I had not heard of the survivor tree...."

    I had heard of it, but always forgot to look for it. It was Ellie who reminded me this last time and I'm so glad because it was so touching to see.

    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Have a faaaaaabulous week and weekend!
    X

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  6. Ron, I love being able to visit NYC through your camera! You find such interesting places to take us, and I always learn something new from these posts -- thank you!!


    So delighted you found Ellie to share your day trip with. I love her heart-shaped sunglasses -- what a perfect touch for the day!


    I hadn't heard about the Survivor Tree before, but I got teary-eyed reading the plaque. How wonderful they put it in expert hands and nursed it back to health! The Oculus is amazing, and I love the wall with the prisms -- great shots, my friend! xo

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  7. Yes, we did. Ellie and I had SUCH A FABULOUS TIME! And she's a great person to walk through New York with because she walks fast (like me) and likes to cover a lot of ground in one day.

    I was soooooooooo happy to have found that viewpoint of One World Trade Center because I have been longing to get that shot FOREVER.

    Yes, I LOVE New York! And whenever I come back from a visit I feel so inspired because of the creative energy there.

    Thanks so much for stopping by, Candice. Enjoy the rest of your week and have a super weekend!
    X

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  8. Oh my, I love the Survivor Tree and everything it represents. Your first shot is exquisite and almost gave me a bit of vertigo! I also love the one of the trade center showing through the bare branches. i also love......well, you get the idea. :-) Happy you had such an awesome time with your friend in your heart city. Take care and happy (photo) shooting!

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  9. That last photo is stunning, Ron! Great dichotomy between old/new.

    Elle looks like she'd be a lot of fun to hang out with. The fact that she doesn't appear to take life too seriously tells me she is the perfect traveling companion for you while exploring NYC! Love the spaceship mural/tattoo shot, as well.

    Hope you enjoyed some great snow yesterday. Have a groovy weekend!

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  10. http://ladyfi.wordpress.comFebruary 21, 2019

    Ah- what lovely shots! Brings back good memories of NYC. And I love your friend's glasses - she has such a lovely smile!

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  11. Aw...thank you for your sweet comment, Debbie :) Whenever I spend time in New York, I always come back inspired to share what I've experience. I guess you could say that New York is my muse.

    "So delighted you found Ellie to share your day trip with. I love her heart-shaped sunglasses -- what a perfect touch for the day!"

    Aren't her sunglasses fabulous? She and I instantly connected when she came to work where I'm employed. We have a lot in common, so we enjoy spending time together. And she's great to visit NY with because she walks FAST like me - HA!

    "I hadn't heard about the Survivor Tree before, but I got teary-eyed reading the plaque. How wonderful they put it in expert hands and nursed it back to health!"

    Isn't it so touching? Ellie reminded me of it when we were there last week, so we made a point to stop by and take a picture. I'm was amazed that the tree already had buds, considering it had snowed recently and was rather cold.

    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Have a great rest of your week and weekend! Gosh, I can hardly believe it's almost the weekend?!

    X

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  12. Me too, Lisa. It was very moving to stand there and read the plaque and then actually SEE the tree. It's amazing that it survived 9/11. I just goes to show how resilient nature can be.

    "Your first shot is exquisite and almost gave me a bit of vertigo! "

    HA! It's funny because after I uploaded that photograph and then cropped it, I didn't realize when I took it how HIGH that ceiling is inside the Oculus. Gave me vertigo as well!

    Ellie and I had such a great time that day. And it was perfectly timed on Valentine's Day because of how much the two of us LOVE New York!

    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Have a great weekend!

    X

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  13. Thanks, Mark :) I was so freaking excited when I found that location. I took five quick shots and prayed that at least one of them turned out.

    "Elle looks like she'd be a lot of fun to hang out with. The fact that she doesn't appear to take life too seriously tells me she is the perfect traveling companion for you while exploring NYC!"

    Yes, you're right about all of that. Ellie is a BLAST to hang out with. She and I travel the same way, we walk fast and like to cover a lot of ground. And you kind of have to be that way when you're in NY because there is always so much see and do. And we both LOVE that city equally.

    Yes, we did get some snow yesterday. In fact, we closed up early at work because it looked like it was going to be a heavy snow storm. However by 5 PM, the snow turned to rain. And today the temps rose into the high 50's. Strange weather we're having.

    Thanks so much for stopping by, buddy. Have a faaaaaaabulous weekend!

    X to you and Tara

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  14. Thank you, Fiona :)

    Isnt' NYC such an amazing city to take pictures? It's such an inspiring city.

    "And I love your friend's glasses - she has such a lovely smile!"

    Yes, she does have a lovely smile, doesn't she?

    Thanks a bunch for stopping by, my friend. Have fantastic weekend!
    X

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  15. Ron, I am so happy you were able to find that exact location because it was so worth your efforts, because that photo PHENOMENAL! Several years ago when I was visiting my family in Long Island, we spent a day in Manhattan and went down to the 9/11 Memorial and saw the Survivor Tree. I wept when I saw it because it so moving to not only read the monument plaque, but to actually see the tree and know that it survived the attack on The World Trade Center was so moving.

    So glad you were able to visit with your friend. I bet you had so much fun. I LOVE her sunglasses! By the way, my cousin went to Pace University. Did you go to school there or did you just live in the dorms?

    Have a wonderful week, Ron xo

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  16. Hola Denise!

    Thank you :) When Ellie and I turned down that street and spotted the view of the tower, I was SOOOOOOOO happy! I ran into the middle of the street like a crazy person and started taking pictures. The were doing construction on that street, so I was lucky to be able to find a spot that didn't have any traffic.

    Isn't the Survivor Tree such a moving experience? To think that it survived that horrible day is amazing!

    "By the way, my cousin went to Pace University. Did you go to school there or did you just live in the dorms?"

    That's so cool! No, I didn't go to school there, I only lived in their dorms. I went to a different school that didn't have dorms, but was affiliated with Pace.

    Thanks so much for stopping by, girl. Have a fantastic weekend!
    X

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  17. Incredible picture of One World Trade Center, Ron! Stunning! My girlfriend and I talked about visiting the Memorial the next time we're in New York. I want to go but I'm so worried about how I'm going to feel when I get there. I know how moving it is, so I have a feeling I'm going to start bawling my eyes out.

    It sounds like you had the best time with your friend, Ellie. I love the picture of her with the glass prisms. VERY cool! And being someone who has tattoos, I love her space ship tat!

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  18. Thanks, Matt! :) I was incredible happy that I found that location of One World Trade Center because I've been dying to take picture of that spot.

    " I want to go but I'm so worried about how I'm going to feel when I get there. I know how moving it is, so I have a feeling I'm going to start bawling my eyes out."

    I know what you mean because no matter how many times I visit, I get VERY emotional. And seeing the Survivor Tree this time made me get even more emotional.

    Yes, Ellie and I had a FAB time hanging out that day. I wish we had more time.

    It was so ironic that we saw that space ship mural and that it almost matched HER tattoo!

    Have a super weekend, my friend. And thanks so much for stopping by!
    X

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  19. Ron, I visit the 9/11 Memorial about two years ago and saw the Survivor Tree and was moved to tears. Have you visited the museum? I hear it's very well done and touching.

    Your pic of One World Trade Center is extraordinary! Glad that you were able to get that shot!

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  20. Hello Daniel!

    No, I've never been to the 9/11 museum but would like to one day. I'm kind of afraid of how emotional I'll get if I visit because of how emotional I get just from visiting the pools. No matter how many times I visit, I still get teary-eyed.

    Thank you :) I am so happy that I was able to find that exact viewpoint because it's stunning.

    Hope you're having a great weekend, and thanks for stopping by!
    X

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  21. That last shot is amazing! I'm glad you had such a wonderful time running around with your friend. Sounds like a fantastic day!

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  22. Thank you :) I was so excited when I spotted that location!

    You would love Ellie because she is such a fun, adventurous, and easy-going person. Also, she's a LIBRA!!!!

    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Have a fantastic week!

    X

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  23. Great pictures Ron! I’ve only been to the big apple once and that was a long, long time ago. Would love to go back. Especially with someone that knows the lay of the land.

    After years away, I think I’m going to fire up my blog again. I really miss the interaction from wonderful people like you and I really miss writing as well. See ya soon in the blogosphere my friend.

    !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  24. Hey, Ron, these photos are incredible! I'm so glad you got to visit the financial district as it is such a vibrant area. I, too, remember the old "ghost town" days when you could fire a cannon on Wall Street on a weekend and not hit anybody.

    And I love that final photo of the Freedom Tower standing over the vintage buildings. That's the New York story in one image--old school side by side with the new!

    Take care and come back soon, buddy!

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  25. Hey there Jeff! Sooooooooooooo great to see ya!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Thank you :) I go to NYC at least once or twice a month for a quick day trip. However, this last time I booked a hotel room an stay several days, which enabled me to see a lot. I LOVE NYC, and hope to one day in the near future, move back.

    That's AWESOME! Great to hear that you're thinking of blogging again. PLEASE let me know when you do via email, so that I can follow you. Looking forward to it!

    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. Have a great week!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    X

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  26. Thanks, Rob! :)

    "I, too, remember the old "ghost town" days when you could fire a cannon on Wall Street on a weekend and not hit anybody."

    HA! Yes, you are so right! They only stores they had in Financial District back then were office supply stores (like, Empire) and a few Blimpies, where you could get some lunch. But on the weekends, it was literally a ghost town. Now however, it's like a completely different place. I actually love that area now. It's sexy!

    "And I love that final photo of the Freedom Tower standing over the vintage buildings. That's the New York story in one image--old school side by side with the new!"

    YUP!

    Thanks so much for stopping by, buddy. Have a faaaabulous week!
    X

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