22.04.2017 - 22.04.2017 12 °C
Walking down from the concert hall to Rockefeller centre we crossed Time square, which is an overhyped non-event but scored high on Shin’s todo list, as she tries to see for real what she has been seeing in American movies and shows for the last 20 years. There we go, Times Square. Also high on her list: Shake Shack, the East Coast hamburger chain that is now spreading over the Middle East. Had a burger and curled fries, faced unfriendly staff, an overcrowded restaurant and a ridiculous price tag and we both decided that this was the last Shake Shack in our hopefully long lives.
The final destination of the evening was Top-of-the-rock, the viewing point on the 76th floor of Rockefeller Center. It is competing for that with the Empire State Building, and the main advantage is that you can see the Empire State Building from the “Rock”. The weather was grey but at least there was no mist. We arrived at dusk and survived long enough in the cold wind to see the city lighten up, including the Empire State Building.
I had a similar experience in the eighties, when I stayed in the Twin Towers, at the bottom of Manhattan, more than 10 years before they were flown down. There was a posh restaurant on top of one of the towers from where Manhattan lit up as a long cigar.
New York hasn’t changed much since then – except that the Twin Towers are now Ground Zero of course -, but many other cities have developed impressive skylines and when we compare the high night views we had during this trip, Singapore was more spectacular. From above it is even more obvious that New York is just a stack of boxes, with –literally- no room or desire for architectural creativity.