The First Glimpse

It’s 2008… February. Hilary Clinton is battling Obama for the Republican nomination, Gordon Brown is Prime Minister of the UK and I’m on a bus heading for the city that never sleeps, the big apple… NEW YORK baby! Its been a long day’s travelling up from DC, stopping off in Philadelphia on the way in order to see the Constitution centre and Liberty Bell. But dusk is now creeping in as this bus, packed full of my fellow college students, makes its way along the highway through New Jersey. The roadside is lined with huge factories and chimneys and industrial complexes, all belching smoke and fumes up into the atmosphere. I catch a sign out of the window for ‘Elizabeth’ and my mind is briefly brought around to that terrible film with Orlando Bloom and Kirsten Dunst… Which wasn’t even set there now I think about it. And then it appears, hazy and dim in the distance across the bleak urban, industrial landscape. The large skyscrapers of Wall street and the financial district are clearly visible, as are the high rises of uptown. I’ll only be here for a few days but in the years to come I’ll get to know this city quite well. It shall haunt my dreams and I shall mark my own name onto its long list of those who have been inspired to write of it. In the first few hours it will confuse me. It will terrify me. The bright lights of Times Square will render me nauseous. It shall stay with me forever. But all that is yet to come… Right now it is just a spectre in the distance, beckoning the bus towards it. This is only the first glimpse…

Time Warner Building


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