Monday, May 21, 2012

Thank You

     I didn't know there are awards given out to blogs here so getting this one was a pleasant surprise.

                                     My First Blog Award!

    Apparently there is a protocol to follow upon receiving this award, which follows:
  • thank the blogger who sent you the award and add a link to her/his blog
  • write 7 random things about yourself
  • give the award to other bloggers you love and tell them
     Therefore I would like to thank Littleyana of "thinking out loud" for this award. The other blogs and bloggers I want to send this award to are the following:

     Now, about the seven random things about me...hmmm...some of these might be familiar to those who know me, but here goes:

1. I am crazy about cats.
2. I just got accepted into a nursing program (yeay!).
3. I hate being stuck behind drivers who don't know how to use their signal light or seem not to know where they want to go.
4. I haven't been back to my home country for five years now (huhuhu).
5. I enjoy watching Animal Planet, Discovery Channel, Food Network but most of my primetime viewing is on CBS.
6. I would love to become more proficient in baking.
7. I love to drink tea but I've also learned to drink coffee since coming to the US.

     And there you have it folks, once again thanks to Littleyana and here's to more enjoyable blogs from all over!

© Margj Castillo, Between You and Me, 2010 - Present. 

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Nibbling at the Big Apple

     As a relatively recent arrival in New York, I'm glad that I've had several opportunities to explore the city known fondly as the Big Apple. I've been to places in downtown, midtown and uptown Manhattan. Toured Liberty and Ellis Islands. Seen some musicals, watched a concert and eaten at restaurants big and small. But I still have a list of things I want to do in New York City. Places I still haven't visited, a show or two I haven't seen, food trips not yet taken. So I made a list of all these, hoping that in the next few years I'll eventually get to do all of them. Below is just half of the list, with the other half (and perhaps more to come) to be saved for another post.

The American Museum of Natural History
     This museum, located at 79th Street, Central Park West, has been in operation since the late 1800s. Featured as a setting in numerous movies and tv shows, this museum has permanent exhibits such as the Anne and Bernard Spitzer Hall of Human Origins, Fossil Halls, and The Milstein Hall of Ocean Life. Various other exhibits are also staged all year round. The Hayden Planetarium can also be found in the museum, where spectacular space shows are held daily every half hour. What's nice about this museum is the suggested admission price, meaning you can actually pay less than that should your budget happen to be a little tight. For someone like me who is fascinated by things relating to science, it's a very affordable way to learn and have fun at the same time.

The Lion King (Musical)

     Based on the animated movie of the same title, Disney's The Lion King musical opened in November 1997 and has been playing to rave reviews on Broadway as well as internationally in London, parts of Asia and North America. Awards aside, I would really love to see this show just for its lavish sets and costumes that really make the audience feel like they're in an African savannah. And of course, the gorgeous musical score that includes the works of Sir Elton John and Tim Rice from the movie. Hopefully I'll get to see it soon! 

Brooklyn Bridge

     This bridge that connects Manhattan to Brooklyn was constructed back in 1869 and took 14 years to complete. Spanning the East River, it is one of New York's most famous landmarks. It has also been featured in various movies, tv shows and commercials, the latest one showing a talking gecko pushing an insurance company. I am intrigued by the idea of such a huge bridge having a footpath as part of its structure. Although I'm not that sure if I can actually manage to walk all the way across it, I still want to take the challenge just to see the magnificent views of the city's skyline as well as other sights from its span.

Central Park

     Spanning an area of 843 acres, Central Park stretches from 59th Street all the way to 110th Street, between 5th and 8th Avenues. Its an area that is almost right in the center of Manhattan, from midtown to uptown. Created in the mid to late 1800s, it contains numerous facilities like the Central Park Zoo, tennis courts, and playgrounds in addition to lakes, fountains, meadows and gardens. This park is so much a part of the city that I don't think I've ever watched anything set in New York that did not include at least one scene shot here. Although I've been here a couple of times those visits were like teasers to a main event that I haven't yet begun to really see. With so many picturesque areas and landmark sites, I think one visit will not be enough to satisfy me. Whenever those visits will take place, I'll make sure to bring my camera!

Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts

     This bastion of culture in New York City was founded in 1955 with the institution of a committee aimed at supporting the musical arts. It is actually a complex made  of several buildings that house institutions including the Metropolitan Opera, the New York Philharmonic Orchestra and the New York City Ballet. For the movie buffs out there, this was the setting for Natalie Portman's film Black Swan. The fountain within its grounds was also featured in the New York City episode of Glee. While not particularly a fan of the opera or ballet, I still find this landmark very interesting in the same way that I find museums interesting. For me it's like a living museum since its "exhibits" are for the most part live performances.

Hudson River Park

     Stretching five miles from 59th Street in midtown all the way to the water's edge at Battery Park in downtown, Hudson River Park is the longest waterfront park in the US. The entire length offers numerous areas for various sports and outdoor activities, including water sports. It also welcomes four footed visitors, not just their owners. And should visitors tire from all this activity, there are also restaurants along the way to rest and grab a bite. Another outstanding feature of the park is the bike path that covers its entire length. Biking through all five miles daily should be really good exercise!

Guggenheim Museum

     Located along Fifth Avenue in midtown Manhattan on the east side of Central Park is the Guggenheim Museum. Dedicated to housing works of modern art, it opened back in 1959 and is the last completed project of the late architect Frank Lloyd Wright. Apart from exhibits featuring reknown artists, the architecture of the building itself makes me quite curious about this museum.

© Margj Castillo, Between You and Me, 2010 - Present.