This past April I was able to experience this mix of American heritage firsthand.
My English teacher took a group of ninety students on a trip to New York. We saw all the regular sights like the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, rode on a subway, ferry, saw the Broadway Musical, Phantom of the Opera, and went to Chinatown, Times Square, The Empire State Building, Central Park, Coney Island, and Ground Zero.
The two experiences that made this trip memorable for me were visits to the Empire State Building and Central Park. When we visited the Empire State Building we went up to the very tip top. We were able to go outside and take pictures from the landing. It was a teeth-chattering cold and rainy day, and at first I was apprehensive about going outside but my friend talked me into it. We got out there and the wind was blowing so hard you could feel the building sway. Even though I was numb I was still able to enjoy the sites. As I looked over New York City I saw rows and rows of buildings, cabs rushing down the streets and people hurrying to their next destination. I felt as though I could see the whole world. Growing up in a small town it amazed me to see all of the buildings and the people. I realized that I am just one person among millions of others.
The next day we took a trip to a very different part of the city, Central Park. My friends and I wanted to see the park but we didn’t have enough time to walk all the way through. So we sat down on a bench and in a minute two guys on bicycles that had carriages attached to the back rode up. They offered to take us on a tour of the whole park. So after paying them we got into the carriages and set off. One of the boys was seventeen and trying to earn enough money to pay his way through Rutgers University. He knew a lot about the Park and told us where all the movies were made and about all the famous people who had been there. The other guy was quiet. He was from Turkey and could not speak English very well. He had taken this job so that he could learn how to speak English. When we learned this, the adult that was with us said, “Well I doubt you’ll learn any from us with our horrible Southern accents.” The park was the only place that I had seen any grass, it was like a reprieve from the hustle and bustle of the city.
America is all about opportunities and the guy who was trying to learn English really showed how he’d come to America for a new opportunity and he was not afraid to work for it. Central Park was beautiful and I will never forget the tour. New York is a great city and I hope to go back some day.
Dear Reader: This page may contain affiliate links which may earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Our independent journalism is not influenced by any advertiser or commercial initiative unless it is clearly marked as sponsored content. As travel products change, please be sure to reconfirm all details and stay up to date with current events to ensure a safe and successful trip.