Sunday, June 28, 2009

New York Port Authority Station (June 29, 2009)

I could not complete the last post as I was getting through immigration on the Peace Bridge between Canada and the States. After that we immediately landed in Buffalo to learn that we were running an hour behind, and this would result in us reaching NYC at 12.20 in the morning on Monday.

I had booked the Greyhound ticket to Boston for 12.15 in the morning, expecting MegaBus to reach me at 10.45pm. Luckily I reached at 11.53pm, and literally ran with a heavy backpack from 28th to 42nd. All of this in vain, as the bus got full and now I will have to get onto the next schedule at 3.30 in the morning. Today in office is not going to be pretty.

Getting back to Toronto - after learning that the islands were not accessible I went up walking to the Hockey Hall of Fame. Also I had read somewhere that the Canada Walk of Fame was near the Harbourfront, but I could not find it. Later in the night I was walking and came across it at King St W, which is quite a distance away.

From here I caught the subway to the Visitor Centre, and got the map. Casa Loma was built by some rich dude in 1911, and it is a beautiful building, and supposed to have the most number of rooms in any building in Canada. The entry fee is 17CAD, which I did not do, but it may be worth a visit. The subway is Dupont.

The Museum Stop has the Royal Ontario Museum and the Bata shoe Museum, which again may be worth paying a visit to, especially ROM. I had a hot dog lunch here and got interviewed by a couple of students on Spirituality and Religion. After this I walked to the University of Toronto, which like most of the Universities in this part of the world are breath taking. Very serene and calm, with sports going on everywhere – you wouldn’t mind spending days there.

The last part of my hike was to Kensington Market where there are varieties of shops for different types of clothing from Cuban to Nepali. Met this girl called Stacie who took a pic on my camera, and also suggested to come over to a Reggae Dub band playing near King St. Once this was done I got on the sidecar and headed off to the Beaches. Kew Beach is the most popular one, and it is not possible to walk to there from downtown, but the streetcar numbered 501 takes you there, and it is worth riding on this for a novel experience.

I checked into the hostel later in the evening, and this was a very different hostel – The Global Backpackers Inn. Personally I was disappointed as there seemed to be people here who had stayed for ages at this place and knew each other. So it was tougher to meet new people. A private party was also going on at the hostel bar below, and I don’t know – it felt kind of weird to me. The layout also is a bit disjoint, and you will be disoriented when you enter in the first time.

One good thing was they sold the tickets to the top of the CN Tower, and I did not have to stand in line oops queue at the Tower. And just when I was reaching there I got JPs call, and we both made it to the top pretty much at the same time. The tallest free standing building in the world, till the Burj Dubai gets built is worth the 21USD. Obviously it is not NYC, where you can see the skyline from the Empire State, but just to be up so high, and look down from the glass below is amazing.

Dinner was at Momma’s Pizza near the Harborfront, where quite a few activities were going on. I said bye to JP and headed for the nightlife. King St is more the high end sort of partying, but Richmond St, John St have a good mix. I landed up at a club called Circa, for which I had got half off when I was walking the streets. Even then it was 15CAD, and I found the music quite crappy! Half way through I was falling asleep both of tiredness and crappy music. I don’t know how I lasted till 2, but I did and danced on an homage to MJ, and a song which I liked called Paris is burning.

When I came back the private party was still on, and I hung out below just watching the college crowd go at it. Finally 3 I went off to sleep, and woke up at 6 to catch the bus to Niagara Falls, ON.

This last part I will explain in the next post because my hands are aching doing all this typing!


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