Monday Morning 4/7/08:
I woke up at 4 a.m. to catch my 6 a.m. flight to La Guardia Airport in New York City. I got to New York and had to wait for my airport shuttle to drive me to my hotel (took about an hour to get there) I arrived at my hotel which was located just off of Time Square. I put my suitcase up and hung a few things in the closet. I had just enough time to brush my teeth and comb my hair before my first meeting at Wal-Mart's New York Apparel Office. For those of you who know me well....you know I love fashion. I had the opportunity to spend some time learning about our operations in NY, and was privileged to see next season's line-up. I think most people will be surprised at how nice the 2008-2009 collection will be. It was really interesting b/c there were several rooms throughout their offices that were lined up with different categories and styles of clothing (men's, women's, children)...they were also separted by brands. This was pretty cool.
I spent Monday evening walking around Times Square; which was INCREDIBLE. There were people everywhere....and I loved it. I also managed to make it to a Boardway show; Cry Baby! It was hilarious.
I had a "Corporate Compliance and Ethics" conference to attend which was my main purpose for the trip to NYC. It was a really great experience. I heard new speakers, and met a bunch of new people. Afterwards, I went out to dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe and spent more time walking around and shopping in NYC.
I attended my conference, and then spent the evening walking around. Before I realized it I was at the famous Empire State Building. So, I forked over $20 and went up to the top floor. The view was amazing. You could literally see all of Manhattan....in the distance you could see the Statue of liberty. Pretty neat. On my way back to the hotel, I hit up H&M and the Manhattan mall. Monica should be happy b/c I "hooked her up."
On my way back to my hotel I stopped and grabbed some pizza at this little tiny place on the corner. It was the BEST PIZZA that I have ever tasted. Half way through my dinner an old local guy sat at my table (all of the other tables were filled)...it was a little awkward at first, but we had a really great conversation that lasted about an hour. That was a good time.
I check out of my hotel around 10 a.m. and spent a few hours exploring the city before it was time to leave. I took the subway to Downtown NYC. I decided that I needed to pay my respects and visit Ground Zero. My heart was torn and the emotions that I felt right after 9/11 were reinvigorated. It was really sad; however, they were in the process of clearing the land to rebuild, which demonstrates new hope. Across the street there was a film crew that was blocking off traffic and pedestrians b/c they were filming a documentary about 9/11 and the World Trade Center.
I left there and went across the street to St. Paul's Church. This was the church that helped thousands of people right after 9/11. They still had tributes throughout the santuary honoring our fallen heros. That was really cool.
I also found 5th avenue. This is where all of the high-end luxury stores can be found. So, needless to say, I spent some more time shopping.
Overall, I had a really great week, but I missed Monica a great deal.
Other things that I saw:
The New York City Library
Grand Central Station
What I wanted to see and didn't:
Parson's Fashion Design School
Madison Square Garden
The Statue of Liberty (up close)
What I regret:
Not taking walking shoes with me. My feet are still killing me.